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The International Chinese Snuff Bottle Society


Chinese Snuff Bottle Discussion Forum 中國鼻煙壺討論論壇
December 18, 2017, 08:50:03 am
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1  The Gathering / The Lounge / Re: Friday Fun Bottle on: December 15, 2017, 06:09:08 am
Inn Bok,

An interesting bottle! Thanks for sharing.
I like the dramatic lighting...!

Tom
2  Public Forum Categories and Boards / Organic, Metal, and Embellished Bottles / Re: Large cinnabar lacquer bottle. on: December 12, 2017, 08:09:15 am
Hi Adrian,

The carving on your bottle appears to be of particularly high quality, richly detailed, and deeply cut in. A previous owner obviously cared enough about it to have a stopper made to replace the missing original. Is the stopper also cinnabar, or resin? 

If the inside tube extends all the way down to the base, forming a snug fit, then I suspect the intention may have been for the bottle to hold just enough snuff for a few days. Otherwise, a bottle this cavernous would take far too much precious powder. When the owner finally reached the bottom, and literally began scraping the barrel, months could have passed, and the contents gone stale. Just my thought....

Tom 
3  Public Forum Categories and Boards / Glass Snuff Bottles / Re: Overlays, same subject, different qualities. on: December 08, 2017, 11:25:15 pm
Just a bunch of party animals....
4  Public Forum Categories and Boards / Glass Snuff Bottles / Re: Overlays, same subject, different qualities. on: December 08, 2017, 05:21:03 am
Hmmm....I believe another bottle from this party lost his head completely.
5  The Gathering / The Lounge / Re: Friday Fun Bottle on: December 08, 2017, 03:41:16 am

I'm wondering if there is any way to reform a neck in a clear epoxy resin to stabilise the bottle but I'm worried by the heat generated as the epoxy sets.


Adrian,

If anyone knows the answer to your question it's Vaughan (aka Mandarin). He hasn't been active on the forum for a while, but send him a PM.

It must have been a fine bottle once.

Tom
6  The Gathering / The Lounge / Re: Booted by the ICSBS on: December 05, 2017, 11:07:57 pm
Charll,

That's a valid point. I belong to the Siam Society whose older members are sadly dying off, and not being replaced by new young members. A question I often ask at the AGMs is: What is the elected council doing to attract younger members? Sadly, the answer is 'very little.' They serve up the same programs, lecture series and study trips each year. No real interest or effort to re-image the society for the younger generation, or accommodate members with young families.

Without new blood the society is simply aging....and fading.

Could it be that the ICSBS is heading the same way?

Tom
7  Public Forum Categories and Boards / Organic, Metal, and Embellished Bottles / Re: Is this really coral on: December 05, 2017, 08:19:53 pm
Except the little red letters inside the rim of this specimen read "Genuine Coral"....   Cheesy
8  The Gathering / The Lounge / Re: Booted by the ICSBS on: December 05, 2017, 08:10:31 pm

We used to get 200-250 a convention. The last one was 81, but that is because London is expensive, and the dollar and Euro are weak.
Usually we have been getting 100-130 to a convention lately.


Dear Joey,

    I am in awe that so many people used to attend the conventions. I presume those numbers include spouses, children and other non-members.
    Was that before 1998? Because I have read the reviews of every convention since that year, and cannot recall there ever being so many attendees mentioned.
    Anyhow, assuming you are right, the ICSBS Board seriously needs to ask itself why the numbers have dropped from 200-250 down to 80-100.

Best,
Tom 
9  Public Forum Categories and Boards / Gem, Stone, Rock and Fossil / Re: Crystal Clear on: December 04, 2017, 12:37:22 am
Nice bottle Adrian.
And as already mentioned, a wonderful old stopper with a silver 'shovel'.  I have one old bottle with exactly the same type of spoon.......obviously designed for snuffers with a LARGE appetite.

Tom
10  The Gathering / The Lounge / Re: Booted by the ICSBS on: December 04, 2017, 12:29:37 am

I think  the   ICSBS  has  "lost  it"     - very  sad  to say


Peter,

I don't think the ICSBS ever "had it", so there was nothing to "lose".

Sadly, although a member since 1998, I have always felt like an outsider. Of the 600-odd members listed in the directory I suspect that only the conventioneers, who number less than 100, are ever "heard".

Two times during my 19 years questionaires have been sent out to get feedback from the membership. Great potential initiative, and I responded with enthusiasm and plenty of helpful suggestions. I learnt much later from a former board member (who is probably reading this) that absolutely NOTHING was done with the responses. Zilch.

When the Singapore convention was planned around 2002(?), with a side trip to Thailand, I wrote a personal letter to Berthe to offer my services in organizing their excursion. Never had a reply. Many months after the event John Ault told me he had been assigned to arrange it. Fair enough. Until he mentioned that he had promptly handed the task over to a tour operator!

I could go on.......but 'nuff said.

Tom 
11  Public Forum Categories and Boards / Organic, Metal, and Embellished Bottles / Re: Is this really coral on: December 04, 2017, 12:08:26 am
Thank Albert,

For those of you who grew up in England the dyed bamboo coral looks just like Brighton Rock.  Wink

Tom
12  The Gathering / The Lounge / Re: Friday Fun Bottle on: November 30, 2017, 11:59:05 pm
I don't have a Friday Fun Bottle to share.......so here is a Friday Fun Box. A Dux Box to be precise!

Description:
Hardwood box and cover, carved in the form of a pair of stylized ducks holding aquatic plants in their bills, the carving continuing to the base where the ducks’ webbed feet are depicted. 
   
Length 12.5cm

Enjoy!
13  The Gathering / The Lounge / Re: More peanuts anyone? on: November 30, 2017, 11:48:48 pm
Hi Ilene,
Nice wall display! Thanks for sharing.

Inn Bok,
Good craftsmen are getting hard to find here too.

Dear Joey,
Thanks for suggesting the peanuts could be both functional AND objets de virtu.

Tom
14  The Gathering / The Lounge / Re: Anyone know of a collector called Bernard Buckman, died 1991. on: November 28, 2017, 10:10:06 pm
Hi Adrian and Luke,

I don't know how I missed this thread from last May. I may have been travelling on business. Hell, that's no excuse! I have never heard of Bernard Buckman. But I'm surprised Joey hasn't. Not often an older collector passes under his radar.  Wink 

I think you are right about some of these smaller provincial auctions attracting Chinese mainland buyers. There appears to have been a significant slump in the snuff bottle market in the last few months. Two recent high profile US auctions had a high proportion of 'no sale' lots (ones that didn't meet their reserve), and lots which had 'no reserve' went for crazy low bids. For example, reasonably good 19th century blue-&-white porcelain bottles going for US$300 - US$400.....for a group of three!

Any collector who is planning to sell off some of their bottles may do well to place them with one of the minor auction houses. The Chinese mainland buyers seem to sniff out these auctions - perhaps assuming they can pick up better bargains there than at the high profile sales. Who knows - but worth following to see if there is a pattern.

Re your comment:
"Chinese buyers go to their Asian auctions by the van load, none speaking English and all with Chinese bank accounts. I don't know if they are buying for themselves, buying on behalf of people in China or looking to sell what they buy in China."
They are definitely not buying for themselves. The last two scenarios are correct.

Best,
Tom

 
15  The Gathering / The Lounge / Re: More peanuts anyone? on: November 28, 2017, 09:45:20 pm
Hi Richard,

Pill boxes? I never thought of that. As they are meticulously carved and seem to have no useful function, I had assumed they were scholar's desk objects. Or, as Joey says, 'objets de virtu'.

Each piece has a unique shape, and needs to be inserted in exactly the right way, otherwise it won't fit - kind of like a 3D puzzle.

Tom
16  The Gathering / The Lounge / Re: More peanuts anyone? on: November 27, 2017, 11:59:03 pm
Adrian,

Here is its smaller cousin....   Wink

Tom
17  The Gathering / The Lounge / Re: More peanuts anyone? on: November 27, 2017, 12:10:13 am
Inn Bok,

Your carpenter has done a wonderful job.
I want one (a matching pair would be even better)....!

Tom
18  The Gathering / The Lounge / Re: More peanuts anyone? on: November 26, 2017, 11:44:00 pm
Thanks everyone for your compliments.

Inn Bok,
   If you send me some diamonds I will test your theory....!   Grin

Samson,
   I certainly hope nobody tries to eat these peanuts.

Joey,
   I like 'objet de virtu'. It has a nice ring to it. 

Best,
Tom
19  Public Forum Categories and Boards / Organic, Metal, and Embellished Bottles / Re: Is this really coral on: November 26, 2017, 11:37:04 pm
Hi Albert,

I think you have got it. From what I have observed, some coral varieties are very porous and therefore light in weight, while others are dense and heavy. Bamboo coral seems to fit the latter group.

Tom
20  The Gathering / The Lounge / More peanuts anyone? on: November 26, 2017, 07:45:03 am
Hi All,

Since we have had a recent thread on peanut bottles, and another on carved wood panels, I thought I'd combine the two topics and post an interesting carved wood peanut. It is 150 mm (just under 6 inches) long. The realistically carved shell splits open to reveal 3 nut pods inside. Each of the nuts also opens like a miniature box with a smoothly hollowed interior. There are eight parts in all.

Not sure what one would keep in these mini boxes, but it sure is fun to fiddle with, so I guess it is some kind of scholar's desk object. I have another shorter one, which has two pods instead of three.

Enjoy! 
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