The Bodhisattva Collection

Large and Rare Transitional Period (1635-1650) Bowl

Large and Rare Transitional Period (1635-1650) Bowl

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Directory: Antiques: Regional Art: Asian: Chinese: Porcelain: Pre 1700: Item # 945703
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From our Chinese Blue and White Collection, an exceptional and large Transitional Period (1635 - 1650) kraakware porcelain bowl of the rare Border IX Type. The center well depicts a scholar being served tea, three trapezoidal-shaped panels on the bowl's inner wall depict figures in various landscape settings, and the outside of the bowl is decorated with six additional panels of figures in various landscape settings. All scenes are separated by narrower panels of what are alternatively called "Iznick" or "Turkoman" or "Dutch style" flowers, which are the hallmark and “signature” of the Border IX style. For a full discussion on the Border IX style, See Kraakware, A Moment in the History of Trade, by Maura Rinaldi, pp 112- 115; (Rinaldi's work is widely considered to be the seminal treatise on Chinese kraakware). For photos of a very similar bowl, See also Chinese Ceramics in the Collection of the Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam, page 64 item 49.

The so-called Transitional Period (or Interregnum Period), is the time between the fall of the great Ming Dynasty and the beginning of the Qing Dynasty. Due to the chaos in China at the time and the lack of imperial control over the kilns, the Chinese porcelain painters felt free to experiment with new styles of painting. As a result, various new design motifs emerged during this period, many of which existed for only a few short years. This well-painted bowl is just such an example, distinguishable by its panels painted with what are referred to as either "Iznik" or "Turkoman" or "Dutch "style flowers. This border style is very rare, and is known to have been produced during a narrow time frame between 1635 – 1650.

Fans of our site will recognize this as yet another example of our fascination with Transitional Period wares, and in particular, with these unusual kraakware variants known as Border IX. Unfortunately, we only have two such pieces of this type for sale at present, as examples like this are increasingly difficult and expensive to come by. (Please see our other listing, item 937753, for our large Border IX charger).

Size and Condition: A large piece at 14 inches in diameter, 6 1/4 inches tall. There is heavy glaze fritting to the rim of the bowl which is common for kraakware pieces in general, as they often had problems keeping the glaze adhered to narrow rim surfaces. The porcelain exposed from this fritting has fired orange, which is the result of iron oxide in the body migrating to the surface of the rim. Some of these glaze frits are deeper than others and almost look like small chips, but they are really glaze losses and not chips per se, and do not detract from the piece. There is one small sealed hairline about 1.5 inches long, but the piece still rings like a bell. Overall very fine condition, and a superb and large example of this rare type of blue and white.