Rare Chinese ‘Ghost’ vase, pale blue glaze with pale prunus decoration, 17th century

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Rare Chinese porcelain ‘Ghost’ vase, the elegant form with short rim, tall narrow neck to a rounded shoulder, the ovoid body on a short foot, decorated with a pale blue glaze with pale prunus decoration, 17th century

16.5cm high, 8.5cm across
Excellent condition

Provenance: from the collection of a Brisbane Australia doctor, active in London between the Wars and brought back shortly after.

The dating of this piece is reached via a single directly comparable piece, sold as part of the David Weber Collection, NY 1958 (Parke-Bernet) , then in the Corbin Collection, exhibited Portland Art Museum 1964 and subsequent years, sold Christies NY 16-17 September 2010 lot 1367. It has the same foot, glaze, and decoration style, although of a dragon rather than prunus.
The technique is described as ‘incised’, and is hard to describe; the underglaze cobalt almost appears to be penetrating into the body beneath, and with the glaze over the top does indeed appear to be incised. The overall effect is very subtle and easily missed, like a view in a Chinese Garden on a foggy morning, the sunlight subdued to a blue tinge by the thick atmosphere….

 

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