Two porcelain plates. China, Yongzheng Period


Two porcelain plates decorated with Famille Rose enamels, middle painted with two Mandarin ducks, one swimming in water and the other flying. Center with budding or blossoming lotus flowers. Outer rim with four cartouches enclosing flowered gate decoration. Border with interlacing frieze. Ensemble painted with large polychrome enamels palette of graduated pinks, turquoise blue, cobalt blue, manganese brown, emerald green, yellow, underglaze red and gilt enhancements.

China, Yongzheng Period (!723-1795)

Diameter: 22,5 cm (8-3/4 in.)

For a platter with same pattern consult Christie’s, London, February 19, 2013, lot 1.

The representation of ducks on lotus in pond as decorative motif on Chinese ceramics originated in the Tang Dynasty and was particularly popular during the Yuan Dynasty on housewares and blue and white vases. The motif’s popularity continued with the Ming and Qing Dynasties and was appreciated during Xuande, Chenghua, end of Ming Period and second half of the Qing Dynasty. The duck pair is associated with loyalty and harmony.

"Designs as Signs : Decoration and Chinese ceramics" (Foundation David Percival, London, 2001), Stacey Pierson explains that the Mandarin duck pairs, yuan yang, represent conjugal loyalty or harmony because they mate for life. With the lotus association a homophone is formed with the word, harmony (he) then representing a wish for his sons.

Provenance :

  • Items quantity:  1
  • Expertissim Reference: 2014020903