Subject:Re: Guangxu mark wucai bowl pt.3
Posted By: Bill H Tue, Oct 26, 2021
I appreciate the quality of your photography, which leaves no doubt in my mind that this is an instance of a modern artist or group of artists striving hard to produce a convincing facsimile of a Guangxu imperial porcelain. I've put together a collection with its fair share of Guangxu and other late Qing porcelains guided in large part by the catalogs of the late German collector Georg Weishaupt, who assembled a collection of late Qing wares which helped dissuade skeptics who before his time believed these products had no place beside fine porcelain arts in museum and other collections.
Your bowl has no serious individual flaws, just enough variances in things like the tone of some pigments, the way the dragons are conceived and drawn, and an overall look of newness. Rather than sit around and pontificate, though, I've pulled out some photos of a pair of my favorite Guangxu tea bowls which actually lack a Guangxu reign mark but have one that reads "Jin Yu Zhen cang (金玉珍藏), "From the precious collection of treasure". These date to around 1900 and are as finely painted as many imperial porcelain. Some fine points missing in your bowl I believe are the dragon's lack of much resemblance to those of the early Qing Kangxi period, which was a trait of the Guangxu period. Also, the fine detailing in designs on your bowl shows evidence of an unsteady hand on the brush, which would never have been tolerated in porcelain for the palace. A third point would be the tone of the iron red pigment of the dragon on your bowl, whereas this color in the Guangxu era varied from what is seen on one of the my cups and varies in some cases to a brighter orange.
I would urge you to seek out the Weishaupt auction catalogs "From the Dragon's Treasure" and "The Great Treasure" if you don't already have them. The former volume shows various porcelain markings of the late Qing Era, beginning with the Jiaqing reign.