Subject:Re: Japanese Bulb vase
Posted By: Bill H Sun, Oct 20, 2019
I can certainly understand why you saw "Wanli" in the middle of that jumble of misshapen strokes, but it's actually an apocryphal kaishu version of "Made in the Qianlong Reign" (乾隆年製 - Qianlong Nian Zhi). Below is another view, PhotoShopped for a modicum of clarity.
This piece of Christian's looks to me to be a hybrid tulipiere, starting with a center neck that has been whittled down from those on most 19th-early 20th century versions I've seen, while leaving the rest of the topside round rims in the same configuration. See the second and third pictures for the earlier form of which I speak.
I flipped back through Liu Liang-yu's opus, "A Survey of Chinese Ceramics - Qing Official and Popular Wares" and found a Yongzheng tulipiere with the same short neck as Christian's vase but surrounding necks about half as high as the center one. The Yongzheng version and this vase's decoration around the middle neck and surrounding low rims (which motifs look like transfers) make me think this vase may be contemporary, with its lack of mini-necks around the outside being an economy measure to boost profits. However, I have seen other Chinese tulip vases made during the last couple of decades that do have additional necks, so my observation may not apply across the board.