A Kangxi Blue and White Porcelain Teabowl and Saucer. The Moulded Body Decorated with an Erotic Scene of a Scantly Clad Couple Together Below a Willow Tree.
Condition: Very good, one minute glaze frit to the teabowl c.2 x 1 mm.
Size: Diameter saucer : 11.5 cm (4 1/2 inches)
References:For a Kangxi teabowl and saucer of this design see : Chinese Porcelain in the Collection of the Rijksmuseum Amsterdam, The Ming and Qing Dynasties (Christiaan Jorg, Phillip Wilson, The Rijksmuseum, 1997) page 113, plate 113. For Kangxi blue and white porcelain saucers of this design see our `Sold Items` 21405, 214061, 21407, 21408.
Acupuncture / Erotic Design :
This Kangxi Porcelain design has been interpreted in different ways, older descriptions sometimes refer to the design as depicting acupuncture. However this does seem highly unlikely, as it is not normally practised without clothes on and they do look rather happy. It could be that this was a rather coy description, when the real subject was known. Erotic scenes are rare in Chinese art and are mostly taken from `pillow books`, erotic designs are also rare on Chinese Porcelain and seem to have been made for the domestic and local export market. It is though, not possible to rule these piece out as Export Porcelain for the European market as the form is so close to other Kangxi Export Porcelain. The design is quite unusual, but is the most common erotic design found on Chinese Porcelain. It normally appearing on saucers of this size, however sometimes teabowls and saucers are encountered. To my knowledge other forms do not occur with this distinctive pattern. The the design can be seen as being in `Chinese Taste` however it is possible it was made as tea services for the Dutch market, although uncommon they do seem to be found in Dutch collections. Finding a teapot or any other tea service form would of cause prove they were made as export ware rather than being for the domestic market or local market.