From our Chinese Blue and White Collection, a fine Qianlong Period (1736-1795) large export porcelain dish or small charger, depicting "Three Friends of Winter," pine, prunus, and bamboo, in a fenced garden setting with floral sprigs and cash diaper motifs on the border. The reverse is plain.
This is an unusually well-executed example of 18th century export ware. The painting is very refined and precise, with delicate shading to the flowers, and a wonderful sense of restraint and proportion that is almost "in Chinese taste," even though this is clearly export ware. This restraint is exemplified by the generous use of "negative space" (unpainted white porcelain), whereby the artist has avoided the temptation for over-decoration, which is otherwise endemic to lots of export ware that catered to the European baroque aesthetic. A charger with the same pattern can be seen in a group of export porcelain sold at Sotheby's as Lot 70, Sale AM (Amsterdam) 1059, Oct 29th, 2008 "Furniture, Clocks, Ceramics and Decorative Arts."
Size and Condition: 12 1/4 inches in diameter, 1 1/4 inches deep. Essentially perfect: There are some iron spot pinpricks but these are not considered flaws. There is also one very small spot at the 10 o'clock position where the glaze appears to have "crawled" (not adhered), but this is insignificant, and we mention it only for accuracy and completeness.