The highlight of 2018 Hong Kong spring sales - a gold-pink falancai bowl, mark and period of Kangxi, is expected to fetch in excess of HK$200m at Sotheby's.
This magnificently enameled pink-ground bowl is without question the finest example of its type and the only ever recorded with this design. There exists however a closely related example, the pride of the National Palace Museum Taipei, which is painted with different flowers but using the exact same colour ground.
Given the rarity of the colours used and the admirable perfection of the firing, it is likely that the two were painted and fired side by side. Thrown and fired by potters at the Imperial kilns in Jingdezhen, the bowls were then painted in the Imperial Palace workshops in the Forbidden City in Beijing, possibly by Jesuits resident at the court of the Kangxi Emperor, and fired a second time.
The Idemitsu Museum of Arts, Tokyo
The present bowl once belonged to the celebrated collector Henry M. Knight and has not been seen on the market for over thirty years. It was once belonged to the collection of the Idemitsu Museum of Arts in Tokyo also.
A PINK-GROUND FALANGCAI BOWL PINK ENAMEL YUZHI, MARK AND PERIOD OF KANGXI
- K.K. Chow, Shanghai, 1930/31.
- Bluett & Sons, London, 1931.
- Collection of Martin Erdmann, acquired in 1931.
- Christie’s London, 17th November 1937, lot 73 (part lot).
- Bluett & Sons, London.
- Collection of Henry M. Knight (died 1971), The Hague, Holland, acquired in 1938.
- Sotheby’s Hong Kong, 20th May 1986, lot 123.
- Collection of the Idemitsu Museum of Arts, Tokyo.
- Oosterse Schatten: 4,000 Jaar Aziatische Kunst, Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam, 1954, cat. no. 368, illustrated pl. 23.
- Ceramics that Fascinated Emperors – Treasures of the Chinese Jingdezhen Kiln from the Idemitsu Collection, Idemitsu Museum of Arts, Tokyo, 2003.
Estimate upon request