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Flask with Scenes of Plowing
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Flask with Scenes of Plowing

Description Exhibitions Provenance Inscription Credit
Description This large moon flask is painted all over in underglaze cobalt blue. The panels on either side represent scenes from the Yuzhi Gengzhi tu, a set of forty-six paintings illustrating rice and silk culture commissioned by the Kangxi emperor (1662-1722) in 1696. The series was published in 1712 by the court official Jiao Bingzheng, whom adopted European methods of perspective he has learned from Jesuit missionaries in China. This flask includes two scenes of a man plowing, a large tree in the foreground and the background filled with water and mountains. Surrounding the scenes are arabesque peony scrolls; the neck is decorated with sculpted bats eating fungi and painted bats between them. A seal mark is placed centrally above the round scene-filled panels. The cobalt blue pigments are applied in varied shades of subdued blue, softly brushed on the receding sky and speckled on the fields. Textures abound with the use of thin brush strokes, patches of wet pigment, splattering, or dragging pigment.
  • Imperial Chinese Treasures from the Walters Collection. 0.
  • Masterpieces of Chinese Porcelain. The Walters Art Gallery, Baltimore. 1980-1981.
Provenance William M. Laffan; William M. Laffan Sale, American Art Galleries, January 20-21, 1911, no. 107; Henry Walters, Baltimore, 1911 [mode of acquisition unknown]; by bequest to Walters Art Museum, 1931.
Inscriptions Reign mark of the Qianlong emperor In blue underglaze: da qing qian long nian zhi
Credit Bequest of Henry Walters, 1931

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1736-1795 (Qing dynasty (1644-1911))
porcelain with underglaze blue
Accession Number
Approx. H: 23 1/4 × W: 17 1/4 × D: 5 3/4 in. (59 × 43.8 × 14.6 cm)
  • China (Place of Origin)
Location Within Museum
Not On View


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