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Jorge Welsh Oriental Porcelain and Works of Art

Dutch-Decorated Plate
Qing dynasty, Qianlong period (1736-1795), ca. 1730-1750
Chinese porcelain decorated in overglaze enamels and gilt applied in Holland
Diameter: 22.7 cm

A plate modelled with a broad rim. Delicately painted in the centre in overglaze enamels, including bright shades of iron-red, turquoise, blue, yellow and brown, picked out in black and highlighted in gilt. It shows a lively whale hunting scene in an arctic region, depicting three Dutch vessels sailing amid icebergs on a rough sea, one behind an iceberg at the far right, one in full sail at the centre, and another flying the Dutch flag just visible behind a huge iceberg to the left. In front of them are three rowing boats filled with colourfully dressed whale hunters discharging harpoons, and attempting to catch a whale which is emitting spray from its blow hole, whilst pulling another towards the icy land. In the foreground, a seaman fires a shotgun at a polar bear standing on the icy shore, while a large walrus swims behind him and a flock of seagulls flies above. The rim is decorated with a narrow band of Vetruvian scroll in gilt.

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