A Rare European Subject Chinese Export Porcelain Dish, Kangxi c.1690 – 1710
A rare Kangxi blue and white porcelain dish c.1690-1710, painted with Europeans in a garden landscape. The two main figures are proabably Dutchmen, they are well dressing and are greeting each other. Their assistants are more simply dressed and stand behind the more important figures barefoot.
In perfect condition.
Diameter : 15.4cm
For a larger version of this design see : European Scenes on Chinese Art (Jorge Welsh, London 2005. ISBN 0-9550992-1-8) pages 30-31. The author states "apart from the present dish, there are only a few other examples recorded".
Reign Marks on Kangxi Blue and White Porcelain :
Kangxi blue and white export porcelain object are sometimes found with the six character mark of the emperor Kangxi (1662-1722) to the base. These none-imperial reign marks are referred to as minyao in Chinese, denoting them as `popular wares` not destined for court use. However the majority of the marked pieces bare the mark of earlier Ming dynasty emperors, some are Jiajing (1522-1566), occasionally Wanli (1573-1620) but by far the most commonly encountered marks are those of Chenghua (1465-1487). David Howard in `The Choice of the Private Trader` (David S. Howard, Zwemmer, 1994) notes that “The Chenghua mark .. was not intended as a forgery, but rather as a compliment to the quality of the piece and to replace the mark of Kangxi who had forbidden the use of his name on porcelain made for export after 1682; a ban which nominally remained in force until the late 19th century”. It appears this ban was not enforced, or if it was only partly enforced, as we have had many Kangxi export pieces made after this date (1682) that bare the six character Kangxi mark. It is worth noting that many 19th century copies of Kangxi blue and white porcelain bare a four character Kangxi mark, something you do not on the original, all Kangxi marks on porcelain of the period were of six character form.