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Chinese Snuff Bottle Discussion Forum 中國鼻煙壺討論論壇
October 17, 2018, 09:40:03 am
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Hollow Line Theory ?

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Author Topic: Hollow Line Theory ?  (Read 1799 times)
George
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« on: October 30, 2012, 09:10:11 pm »

I visit the Asian Arts Forum from time to time, and stumbled onto an old topic showing this bottle..

There was only one reply towards identifying it, and that poster commented about a "hollow line theory".. Going futher to comment how this particular bottle is a prime candidate when talking about this theory, and tells this to be a late Qing or early Republic, circa 1890 to 1930 based on that theory.

I am very curious what the hollow line theory is ...






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rpfstoneman
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« Reply #1 on: October 30, 2012, 11:59:25 pm »

Hollow Line Theory (Source:Gotherborg.com, definitions)-

The tendency of the cobalt particles to concentrate on the outer edges of underglaze blue brush strokes or washes. The cause seems to be unknown.  In later porcelain, the effect might have been caused by the porcelain being bisque fired before the decoration being applied.

The technique of bisque firing could have entered the Chinese porcelain industry with the Japanese technology that was introduced during the first decades of the 20th century, where this is the common practice.

In the original theory published by Calvin Chou in 1978 a late Qing time span was suggested during which this would have occured. The thought is the "hollow line feature" generally strongly suggests a late Guangxu/early Republic date, but similar effects can be found in all periods.

In my readings on this subject, many feel this theory does not hold water in regard to dating.

The first picture is taken through a microscope at 100 X enlargement of a very thin line in the decoration on a Chinese porcelain dish which from general criteria are datable to the late Guangxu/early Republic Period, first decades of the 20th century, clearly demonstrating a "Hollow Line". "Hollow lines" occurs in the entire decoration of this dish as well as in the mark, which imitates a Ming period mark. In this pictures the bubble structure in the glaze is unaffected by the blue area below.

The second is taken through a microscope at 100 X enlargement of a very thin line in the decoration of a Chinese porcelain dish shard from the excavation of the cargo of the East Indiaman Gotheborg, which foundered in 1745. All porcelain pieces in this cargo was most likely from the 1720-40 period. The pictures demonstrates a normal underglaze blue line with no "Hollow Line". The shard and its decoration is typical for the cargo. It could be noted that in this picture there seems to be less bubbles in the glaze over the blue areas.

(Photo Sources: Jan-Erik Nilsson, 2003)



* hollowline.jpg (39.45 KB, 400x800 - viewed 20 times.)

* nohollowline.jpg (16.49 KB, 400x400 - viewed 17 times.)
« Last Edit: October 31, 2012, 12:34:29 am by rpfstoneman » Report Spam   Logged

Charll K Stoneman, Eureka, California USA, Collector Since 1979.

George
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« Reply #2 on: October 31, 2012, 12:37:17 am »

Fascinating !

Apparently even thinking of an item being a candidate or not for this theory would at least require magnification like you show.. So not sure how someone could consider an item like the above snuff bottle without the same magnification showing these differences ..



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Joey
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« Reply #3 on: November 15, 2012, 08:07:18 pm »

This is amazing ! But how big an instrument is needed to get a 100X magnification?
Joey
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Joey Silver, collecting snuff bottles since Feb.1970

Tom B.
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« Reply #4 on: November 17, 2012, 10:58:54 pm »

Hi all,

The hollow line theory has been abandoned by almost all porcelain experts.  While most early porcelain will not have hollow lines, we have found many examples of genuine 18th century with hollow lines.  It should not be considered as a rule, but rather a reason to be cautious when dating a piece that has some hollow lines.  There is no shortcut to dating porelain, every aspect needs to be considered.  

The dating of the bottle in question to a time frame of late Qing - Republic is a matter of noticing the Kaishu Qianlong mark.  This type of mark could only be older if it were enclosed in a double square and enamel overglaze rather than cobalt blue underglaze.

Best regards,

Tom Boyle
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Best regards,

Tom B.

Joey
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« Reply #5 on: November 17, 2012, 11:17:27 pm »

Thank you, Tom. It is always a good thing to hear other opinions, which might have more data.
Joey
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Joey Silver, collecting snuff bottles since Feb.1970

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