Lot 84. A large cloisonné enamel censer, fangding, Ming dynasty, 16th-17th century; 12¾ in. (32.4 cm.) highEstimate GBP 30,000 - GBP 50,000. Price realised GBP 52,500. © Christie's Images Ltd 2020

The censer has twin upright handles and is decorated to each side in bright enamels with a bold design of a taotie mask below a pair of confronting kui dragons divided by a vertical flange. The cover is bordered by a band of scrolling lotus below a finely worked reticulated gilt metal panel of confronting dragons chasing the flaming pearl. The cover is surmounted by a Buddhist lion dog. The base has a double vajra medallion with the Eight Trigrams encircling a yin-yang symbol. The censer is supported on four elephant-head blade legs.

Provenance: Acquired in Germany before 1989.

Literature: Dr. Gunhild Gabbert Avitabile, Die Ware aus dem Teufelsland, Chinesische und japanische Cloisonné  und Champlevé-Arbeiten von 1400 bis 1900, Germany, 1981, p. 62, cat. no. 17.

Note: A similar example is illustrated in Avitabile, Die Ware aus dem Teufelsland: Chinesische und japanische Cloisonné - und - Champlevé Arbeiten von 1400 bis 1900, no. 17, p. 62-3; and Lin, Chinese Incense Burners: Collection of Steven Hung and Lindy Chern, no. 13, p. 45.

Christie's. Important Chinese Art, London, 3 November 2020