A rare Ding persimmon-glazed 'Ding' bowl, Northern Song dynasty (960-1127)



Lot 519. A rare persimmon-glazed 'Ding' bowl, Northern Song dynasty (960-1127); diameter 5 1/4 in., 13.2 cm. Estimate 100,000 — 150,000 USDLot sold 170,500 USD. Courtesy Sotheby's.

of conical form, the finely potted wide sides supported on a short foot, applied overall with a rich glaze of persimmon-red colour, thinning at the rim to a dark brown and cream tone, stopping just before the knife-pared foot to reveal the fine buff body.

ProvenanceSotheby's New York, 30th March 2006, lot 22.

Note:  It is very rare to find a Ding bowl of this fine shape and exquisite glaze color. Although persimmon-glazed bowls were made by many northern kilns in China, the striking near-white body visible through the glaze at the rim is a distinctive feature of wares produced at the Ding kilns.

A similar bowl is illustrated in Catalogue of Tokyo National Museum. Chinese Ceramics, vol. I, Tokyo, 1988, cat. no. 368; and a related russet Ding bowl of lobed conical form in the Chang Foundation, Taipei, is illustrated in James Spencer, Selected Chinese Ceramics from Han to Qing Dynasties, Taipei, 1990, pl. 28; and another in the Freer Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., published in Oriental Ceramics: The World's Greatest Collections, vol. 9, Tokyo, 1981, no. 62. It is also interesting to compare a persimmon-glazed bowl from the Scheinman collection, of very similar form but with the more common darker stoneware body used by other northern kilns, included in the exhibition, Hare's Fur, Tortoiseshell, and Partridge Feathers: Chinese Brown- and Black-Glazed Ceramics, 400-1400, Harvard University Art Museums, Cambridge, Mass., 1995-6, cat. no. 20, where it is attributed to the 'Yaozhou' kilns located at Tongchan in Shaanxi province. The exhibition also included three Ding bowls of conical form from the Arthur M. Sackler Museum, Harvard University, with persimmon-colored, splashed black and tea-dust brown glazes, respectively, ibid., cat. nos. 15, 16 and 18.

Compare also two closely related bowls sold in our London rooms, one from the Muwen Tang Collection sold 12th November 2003, lot 9 and another sold 13th November 2002, lot 84; and a similar bowl sold in these rooms, 30th November 1993, lot 224.

Sotheby's. Harmony of Form, Serenity of Color: A Private Collection of 'Song' Ceramics, New York, 23 march 2011