A small blue and white 'phoenix' cupstand, Ming dynasty, Jiajing -Wanli period

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Lot 675. A small blue and white 'phoenix' cupstand, Ming dynasty, Jiajing-Wanli period (1522-1620). Diameter 13.1 cm. Price realised USD 3,810 (Estimate USD 3,000 - 5,000) © Sotheby's 2023

the base with a four-character mark reading changming fugui (longevity and prosperity) in underglaze blue.

Provenance: Pao & Moltke, Toronto, circa 1990.
Canadian Private Collection, and thence by descent.

A blue and white 'lotus bouquet' stem bowl, Ming dynasty, Jiajing-Longqing period

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Lot 676. A blue and white 'lotus bouquet' stem bowl, Ming dynasty, Jiajing-Longqing period (1522-1572). Diameter 13 cm. Price realised USD 10,160 (Estimate USD 8,000 - 12,000) © Sotheby's 2023

ProvenancePrivate Collection.
Christie's New York, 16th-17th March 2017, lot 1191.

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Lot 678. Property from an important New York private collection. A blue and white 'figural' bottle vase, Ming dynasty, Chongzhen period (1627-1644). Height 26.5 cm. Price realised USD 6,985 (Estimate USD 3,000 - 5,000) © Sotheby's 2023

A blue and white 'official' double-gourd vase, Ming dynasty, Chongzhen period

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Lot 679. A blue and white 'official' double-gourd vase, Ming dynasty, Chongzhen period (1627-1644). Height 33.8 cm. Price realised USD 9,525 (Estimate USD 7,000 - 9,000) © Sotheby's 2023

Provenance: European Private Collection.

A blue and white 'figural' dish, Mark and period of Wanli

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Lot 680. A blue and white 'figural' dish, Mark and period of Wanli (1573-1620). Diameter 23.3 cm. Price realised USD 48,260 (Estimate USD 20,000 - 30,000) © Sotheby's 2023

the base with a six-character mark in underglaze blue within a double circle.

Provenance: Sotheby's Hong Kong, 20th-21st May 1987, lot 416.

A finely painted blue and white 'landscape' sleeve vase, Ming dynasty, Chongzhen period

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Lot 681. A finely painted blue and white 'landscape' sleeve vase, Ming dynasty, Chongzhen period (1627-1644). Height 46.3 cm. Price realised USD 215,900 (Estimate USD 70,000 - 90,000) © Sotheby's 2023

Provenance: Sotheby's Amsterdam, 17th December 1986, lot 23.
Dutch Private Collection.
Feng-Chun Ma Chinese and Japanese Art, Amsterdam.
Christie's New York, 14th September 2018, lot 1354.

Note: The political turmoil of the Transitional period resulted in the loss of Ming imperial control over the Jingdezhen kilns. During this time, artisans were free to create porcelains in response to popular tastes, resulting in new themes, subject matter, motifs, and painting styles on porcelain.

The landscape scene on the present jar is masterfully and delicately rendered. Upon close inspection, several figures are seen leisurely lounging in pavilions amidst the surrounding mountains, looming above the vast riverscape. Broad swathes of pale wash and fine inky blue lines express a range of details, textures, and surfaces, from misty clouds and jagged rocks, to swaying willow branches and beautiful renderings of fishermen in action. The intricacy of the scene coupled with the unforgiving nature of the blue and white medium indicate that the painter of this vase was exceptionally skilled. 

Compare a closely related sleeve vase depicting a fishermen on a raft amidst a mountainous landscape from the collection of the late Sir Joseph Hotung, sold in our London rooms, 8th December 2022, lot 282. See another sleeve vase, depicting a scene that is a conceit for the Chinese idiom jiaguan jinjue 加官進爵 (promotion to higher rank or nobility), previously in the collection of President Herbert Hoover, and more recently, the Wolf Family Collection, sold in these rooms, 21st April 2023, lot 606. 

Sotheby's. Important Chinese Art, New York, 19 sept. 2023