KANGXI or YONGZHENG c.1715 – 1735 Chinese Export Porcelain
An Early 18th Century Blue and White Chinese Export Porcelain Plate, Late Kangxi or Yongzheng c.1715-1735. The Moulded Barbed Rimmed Plate Decorated with a Dramatic Ferocious Dragon Raising it`s Self Above Turbulent Water with a Carp Leaping Out of the Water. The Carp has What Appears to be Smoke Emanating From its Mouth with the Image of a Dragon Within it. The Border is of Swirling Water with Flower Heads. The Scales on the Dragon`s Body are White Against Blue, Created by Using Wax Resist.
Condition: Good, some glaze frits to the rim and three small shallow flake type chips to the glaze on the back c.5 x 2, 3 x 2 and 3 x 2 mm.
Size: Diameter : 21.1 cm (8 1/4 inches).
Provenance:An English Private Collection of Chinese and Japanese Blue and White Porcelain.
Dragon Gate :
The leaping carp together with a dragon was used as to wish luck in Imperial examinations. The carp struggles, swimming up-stream, eventually reaching it`s goal of passing through the Dragon Gate.
Fish / `Yu` :
The Chinese word for fish `Yu` is pronounced in the same way as the word for abundance. So fish have come to represent prosperity and the carp is often represented as sign of success because of its perseverance, swimming up river. Pairs of fish swimming together, representing marital bliss, were common from the Southern Song (1128-1279) but it was in the Yuan Dynasty (1279-1368) that fish swimming with aquatic plants became a common subject, the patterns were based on popular designs found in Southern China. Some of the earliest Chinese blue and white porcelain (c.1320-1350) depicts fish swimming with plants, frequently lotus as this represented purity. These Yuan designs were shown in the center of bowls and dishes surrounded by concentric geometric borders.It was not until the 16th century that freer, more open designs of fish swimming among sea weed and crabs were popular.