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Chinese Snuff Bottle Discussion Forum 中國鼻煙壺討論論壇
December 18, 2018, 01:03:27 pm
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Whew.... !

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George
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« on: November 17, 2014, 03:28:12 am »

Had a few dollars saved and decided it a good time to add some extra nice books to the library..

Four back issues, Arts of Asia magazines..

Reflected glory in a bottle: Chinese snuff bottle portraits by Emily Byrne Curtis

Inkplay in Microcosm: Inside-Painted Snuff Bottles, the Humphrey K. F. Hui Collection

The Art of the Chinese Snuff Bottle: The J & J Collection

Pretty excited to finally be able to add these particular books ! 
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YT
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« Reply #1 on: November 17, 2014, 03:48:04 am »

Nice George!! Smiley

It is quite a difficult task to get that few dollars saving when you are not base in the US.

Cheers,
YT
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Joey
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« Reply #2 on: November 17, 2014, 07:15:24 am »

Dear George,
    In the Society, everyone jokes about how all Humphrey's 'Imperial Incised Inscription bottles are thought to be repros, especially HMM, who I don't usually agree with...
    You must let me know what you think of his IPSBs.
Best,
   Joey
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Joey Silver, collecting snuff bottles since Feb.1970

David
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« Reply #3 on: November 17, 2014, 12:05:12 pm »

Congrats! I was looking at the J&J book, those are a little steep for me right now. Please let me know if it is a worthwhile purchase, and which one (between that one and one of the Bloch collection by Moss) would be more informative to a beginner?

I think I can rule out starting with interior painted (except for one certain artist, I don't like the risk profile), jade or precious stones (too pricy), any modern bottle, any normal to lower quality "commoner" bottle. The others, I need to learn more.

 Grin But, I haven't rule out cheap trinket that looks like a snuff bottle to me.

So, please take that preference in mind when you give the recommendation of which one is better for me

Thank you,

David
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« Reply #4 on: November 17, 2014, 02:22:29 pm »

Dear David,
      Do you have Lilla Perry's book? It is from 1960, but is a great intro to collecting snuff bottles.
I would recommend Robert Kleiner's book of the Bloch collection from 1995 (I think). Great information and very little BS. And a lot cheaper than either J & J or Bloch, which were both written by H.Moss.
Best,
   Joey
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George
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« Reply #5 on: November 17, 2014, 02:29:11 pm »

I do not have any of the Bloch Collection volumes..

There seem to be endless volumes via auction houses, and if I was to consider a Bloch reference book, not really sure where to start..  Would prefer references to enamel on glass/porcelain, B&W porcelain, and inside painted bottles.
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« Reply #6 on: November 17, 2014, 02:59:19 pm »

Dear George,
    Try to find the one volume catalogue in hard cover by the late Robert Kleiner from 1995 (I think) at the BM (British Museum):
CHINESE SNUFF BOTTLES IN THE COLLECTION OF MARY AND GEORGE BLOCH   by Robert W. L. Kleiner
London, British Museum Press, c.1995.
ISBNs: 0714114650, 9780714114651
OCLC: ocm33421006

Joey
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George
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« Reply #7 on: November 17, 2014, 04:02:23 pm »

Dear George,
    Try to find the one volume catalogue in hard cover by the late Robert Kleiner from 1995 (I think) at the BM (British Museum):
CHINESE SNUFF BOTTLES IN THE COLLECTION OF MARY AND GEORGE BLOCH   by Robert W. L. Kleiner
London, British Museum Press, c.1995.
ISBNs: 0714114650, 9780714114651
OCLC: ocm33421006

Joey

Thank you very much Joey..

Found it, and ordered !

http://www.amazon.com/Chinese-Snuff-Bottles-Collection-George/dp/0714114650/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1416261653&sr=1-1&keywords=9780714114651
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« Reply #8 on: November 17, 2014, 07:29:10 pm »

Hi Joey,

I will keep an eye on Robert Kleiner's Bloch 1995, thank you. It will be the first one on the next round.

I think I have a whole bunch of books and catalogues coming over the next 2 weeks, so I will try to digest those before I order that one.

I lucked out on the Lilla Perry book, and got a 4 th edition (Black cloth with 5 clawed dragon impression) like new with dust jacket for 19. A little more than 2/3 done, and she had some super nice bottle! Too bad that they are not all colored.

David

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« Reply #9 on: November 17, 2014, 09:18:58 pm »

Hi David,

As you have not yet decided if snuff bottle collecting is a hobby you want to pursue, I think you can take a pause in book purchasing once you have Lilla Perry's "Adventures of a Collector", Bob Stevens' "Collectors' Book of Chinese Snuff Bottles", and a few auction catalogues.

The one by Robert Kleiner that Joey mentioned is good, as this covers a lot of the Bloch collection in a single volume. For your next step I would recommend the 2-volume J&J Collection by Hugh Moss, Victor Graham and Ka Bo Tsang. It's a bit pricey, but the quality of all the bottles, the research, the text and the photography are excellent. This collection has a different perspective from the Bloch one, which was largely hand picked for them by three Western dealers over a relatively short space of time. By contrast the J&J Collection was started in the 1930s, and put together by two generations of ethnic Chinese, applying Chinese taste.   

Tom
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« Reply #10 on: November 18, 2014, 12:40:58 am »

Hi Tom,

Actually, I have a feeling that I think I know where this is leading.  Cheesy But, going to wait until I read all that I had purchased.

I would say 1/2 of what I bought can be easily applied to other areas of collecting Chinese art ... trinkets  Wink  ... or to learn a bit more of my roots. (Rebuss, Motiffs, Painting, Porcelain, Jade (Batholomew), Traditions) It is fascinating.

I am going to purchase both books after I am done reading or if I see a good valued one, as one of the value that I see in the old auction catalogues and books is to let me see what real ones look like. Hopefully, from collections and a time when there are not that much replicas/fakes/questionable items.

Thank you,
David
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« Reply #11 on: November 18, 2014, 01:04:33 am »

Hi Tom,

I was chatting with my mom while typing the other post and she called me an idiot for delaying a purchase I will do anyhow... So, I went ahead and bought those 2 sets and the porcelain books. 

Now, I put in the hard stop on books.  Tongue

David
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« Reply #12 on: November 18, 2014, 01:16:56 am »

Hi George, Tom, and Joey,

Just finished the Chinese Snuff Bottles by Perry. It is an amazingly well written book, the voice and love of collecting is amazing. Humble, feisty and sophisticated. It feels more like reading a story, when it is packed with a lot of useful information.

I like the information on "first hand account" of Chinese porcelain making, the Ku Yueh Hsuan section,and the structure of presenting the kind of bottles.

It is also really neat that she also include price information, which with a multiplier of 32 (5 decades, each decade purchasing power cuts by 1/2) kind of gives a rough idea of what that kind of bottle will cost if inflation is the only factor.

The only thing I wish is to make all the photos color, to take photos of the top and bottom.

David
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« Reply #13 on: November 18, 2014, 02:00:02 am »

Hi David,

I agree, it is a great book. What makes it all the more amazing is that back in 1960 there was almost NOTHING in English about Chinese snuff bottles. Apart from two or three very slim, privately published (and poorly informed) books written decades earlier, Lilla Perry's was really the first book in the English language dedicated to snuff bottles. Almost all collectors since have bought and digested this book when staring out, including myself in 1972. It is still considered by many to be the 'Bible' of snuff bottle books.

So you must forgive her for not showing pictures of the tops and bases of the bottles. Most auction catalogues back then didn't even include photos, so we were grateful to get a book packed with so many images, even in black & white!

Tom
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« Reply #14 on: November 18, 2014, 01:38:01 pm »

Dear David,
    I love that book, and have done since I first saw it in Dec.1969, before my mom's best friend bought me a copy as a Bar Mitzva gift, in Feb.1970.
Wonderful book...
Joey
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« Reply #15 on: November 18, 2014, 01:53:06 pm »

Hi Tom & Joey,

That is true, the condition of this book is so good, that I forgot it is almost a decade older than me! Then it is amazing the number of colored photos and how well they were taken.

Just saw the price on the dust jacket... 12.50! That is a lot for a book in 1964...

David
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« Reply #16 on: November 18, 2014, 11:06:45 pm »

Hi George,

I just finished Chinese Snuff Bottle Rebus by Li. That one is good and worth every cent, I enjoyed his alternative interpretation of the number 29.

But, I don't quite understand the last page. Where he put in the imperial pendant and the brush washer, it does not add or give anything on rebus. All the other items in the book are used to teach about rebus or story or meaning, except for this last 2 item. Do you know why?

David
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« Reply #17 on: November 18, 2014, 11:16:37 pm »

Hi Joey,

I received your "book" today (did not know it was a catalogue), I guess I ass-me incorrectly  Grin

You have/had a wonderful collection shown on the catalogue, it is very clean, reserved, and delicate (except for the organics and misc). I especially enjoyed seeing your plain glass, carved glass overlay, porcelain and minimally carved hard stone (especially the agates).

Have you ever asked (or if you know), when the bottle size of a carved glass overlay goes from 3 inches to 2 inches or a little less, how much harder is it for a craftsman to carve a similar design?

How about carving on a round versus a flat? Does that also increases the level of difficulty?

Thanks,
David

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« Reply #18 on: November 19, 2014, 02:43:27 am »

Dear David,
     Thank you. Where did you get a copy of my catalogue? I reckon, from the statement about Organic, etc., that you are referring to my 1987 catalogue.
     No, I never asked about whether carving a 2 inch high bottle was much harder than carving a 3 inch high bottle, or whether carving a curved surface was harder than carving a flat surface (Who would I have asked? Oddly enough, not a lot of Chinese snuff bottle carvers in Toronto, 1970-1973, or in Jerusalem since 1973!  Grin ), but interesting questions.
     My assumption would be that the smaller the harder, and curved surfaces are harder to carve than flat surfaces, but I never met a carver to ask. And never thought to ask YF or anyone else.
     I do know that to inscribe an 80 mm. square mezuza parchment (the parchment which is hand inscribed by a scribe, rolled up, and put into the mezuza box fastened to the top third of the doorpost of every Jewish home on the right side as one enters) is more than twice the work of inscribing a 120 mm. parchment.
Best,
  Joey



Hi Joey,

I received your "book" today (did not know it was a catalogue), I guess I ass-me incorrectly  Grin

You have/had a wonderful collection shown on the catalogue, it is very clean, reserved, and delicate (except for the organics and misc). I especially enjoyed seeing your plain glass, carved glass overlay, porcelain and minimally carved hard stone (especially the agates).

Have you ever asked (or if you know), when the bottle size of a carved glass overlay goes from 3 inches to 2 inches or a little less, how much harder is it for a craftsman to carve a similar design?

How about carving on a round versus a flat? Does that also increases the level of difficulty?

Thanks,
David


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« Reply #19 on: November 19, 2014, 11:55:55 am »

Hi Joey,

You are sharp! It is the 1987 one. I purchased it from Wonderbook that have a storefront on Amazon, they are in the DC/Metro area.

There are 3 more copies left, and one of them even have your inscriptions (the most expensive one).

Thank you for the knowledge on Mezuza(h?) parchment, I looked online and finally understand why those are so clean and well kept on a few houses in N. Carolina that I saw. I always thought it was a newspaper tube or some kind of community post box.

 Shocked  You don't know! Just kidding... I can't find anything on how to carve glass overlay, so was just taking a blind shot  Smiley


I tend to like to find out all I can before I ask for help, one of my teacher is like that. He will not answer unless you showed that you already researched first (if his mood is foul, then it better be some great research...).

I have 2 small red overlay glass bottles that I scavenge hunted for 50. One of them (2nd favorite of all bottle/trinkets, a little over 2 inches) was planned to be for my last photo post, and another (under 2 inches) is like 4 or 5 photo post more down the line of my trinkets. But, the more I look around the net and read the incoming stream of books, the more curious I am becoming. I still can not find a same one (on all these parts size, bottle shape, overlay carving). For a while I was thinking these are good fakes, as they are not flat. But, after reading Perry's book (pages on bottle shape) and seeing some nice older bottles that are not imperial. I am thinking there is a small chance...

I put the really nice things I stumbled into elsewhere, so will need to make a trip and take some photos of one of them for either this week or next. I can't contain my curiosity after seeing you wonderful plain and carved glass so is pulling that smaller one forward.

Thank you,
David
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