A 'Yaozhou' persimmon-glazed conical bowl, Northern Song Dynasty (960-1127)


Lot 5058. A 'Yaozhou' persimmon-glazed conical bowl, Northern Song Dynasty (960-1127); 14.5 cm, 5 3/4  inEstimate 100,000 — 120,000 HKDSold for 137,500 HKD (16,269 EUR). Courtesy Sotheby's.

of shallow conical form, the straight flaring sides elegantly raised on a short straight foot, covered overall in a glaze of rich ochre-brown tone, the knife-pared foot left unglazed exposing the light grey stoneware.

Provenance: Collection of Yip Shing Biu.

Note: Persimmon-glazed wares were produced at several kilns in North China during the Song dynasty, the most famous being those of the Ding and Yaozhou kilns in Hebei and Shaanxi provinces. The distinctive glaze was admired not only at the time of production. Cao Zhao in his Gegu yaolun [The essential criteria of antiquities] of 1388 comments that it was more expensive than the famous 'Ding' white ware. Perhaps the complexities involved in creating the persimmon glaze contributed to its relative rarity and value, as achieving the colour involved an initial application of a thin bluish-black glaze, followed by another very thin coating of iron oxide.

A bowl of similar form from the Muwen Tang collection, included in the exhibition Song Ceramics from the Kwan Collection, Hong Kong Museum of Art, Hong Kong, 1994, cat. no. 86, was sold in our London rooms, 12th November 2003, lot 43; a slightly smaller one was sold in these rooms, 30th May 2019, lot 9, from the Tianminlou collection; and another was included in the exhibition The Masterpieces of Yaozhou Ware, The Museum of Oriental Ceramics, Osaka, 1997, cat. no. 56.

Compare also a larger persimmon-glazed bowl modelled with straight sides, sold at Christie’s New York, 26th March 2003, lot 211, and again in these rooms, 5th April 2016, lot 2864.

Sotheby's. EYE/EAST, Hong Kong, 22 May 2020