A pair of celadon-glazed dishes

Jiaqing mark and period (1796-1820)

Each dish, with rounded side and flaring rim supported on a tapering foot, is covered with a translucent pale sea-green glaze, the rim dressed brown. The base is left white and is inscribed with a six-character seal mark.

19.7 cm diameter


Formerly in the collection of Gustaf and Annie Wallenberg, acquired prior to 1918, thence by descent in the family

Gustaf Wallenberg (1863-1937) worked as representative for the Swedish government in China and Japan from 1906 until 1918 and became the first permanently stationed Swedish diplomat in East Asia.

Celadons were the earliest glazes in China and were used throughout Chinese history. During the Song dynasty, they had become very sophisticated, their shades being likened to jade. The Qing dynasty saw a revival of celadon wares, when extraordinary pieces were produced by applying the translucent blue-green glaze over a pure white porcelain body.

A similar pair of dishes from the Qianlong period is illustrated in the Meiyintang Collection. Jiaqing mark and period celadon-glazed porcelains are not very common and dishes like the present pair are rare. A closely related pair of dishes of smaller size, also with brown-dressed rims, but with the hall marks Jingwei Tang zhi (‘Hall of Respectful Awe’), was sold at Christie’s New York. Other known examples of fine celadon wares bearing this mark, but dated to the 19th century, suggest that these were also produced in the Jiaqing period, and that the present pair of dishes can be attributed to the same group.

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