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Chinese Snuff Bottle Discussion Forum 中國鼻煙壺討論論壇
June 25, 2017, 08:53:18 pm
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Teasing the Crane in the Tang Collection?

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Author Topic: Teasing the Crane in the Tang Collection?  (Read 731 times)
cshapiro
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« Reply #20 on: June 07, 2017, 08:53:59 pm »

Dear Steven,

I don't have the bottle in my possession yet so unfortunately only have fuzzy photos at the moment.

I was hoping it might be the Tang Collection bottle, but that's obviously not the case.
After putting them side by side, I like mine better than the Tang one. It appears (to my eyes) to be a much better copy of the original - it seems to have more fluidity.

I think it's hard to tell anything with the image of the bottle so pixelated.
So I will post photos when it gets here.




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« Reply #21 on: June 07, 2017, 10:45:16 pm »

Dear Cathy,

I agree with you that you bottle might be better than Tang one. Yes, once you have better photo, we can have more insights.

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Steven
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« Reply #22 on: June 08, 2017, 04:39:11 am »

Hi Cathy

Thanks for putting all 3 together...

IMO.... the middle Bottle is nice, but I think is painted using a brush and not bamboo

For me, I think the Tang bottle is the nicest especially the way the small figures and the way the landscape and foliage were painted... IMO, it will only look nicer and nicer the more you admired it..

Pin
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« Reply #23 on: June 08, 2017, 07:32:41 am »

This is an informative thread.  George, the quote you referenced along with Cathy's side by side photos really shed light on bottle shapes typical to certain ages, which often baffle me. And Steven's comment about scholar vs commercial artists shed light on that subject as well.
Thanks all!

Rheuben.
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« Reply #24 on: June 08, 2017, 09:33:37 am »

I prefer the one on the left, but after that, the one on the right pleases me more than the one in the middle,
though the dirt inside, done to make it look older, is off-putting.
But I agree with Steven that the left one is the only genuine Ding.

George, no harm done. It just really shocked me that I knew nothing about any Japanese faking IPSBs, and
seemed 'wrong'.
   Any of us can remember things wrongly - I remembered the distance between myself and a monk I went to help in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre (when this Franciscan monk was attacked by Greek Orthodox monks) in Sept.2004 as about 15 ft., when in reality, it was 5-6 ft.! 

Best,
Joey
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Joey Silver, collecting snuff bottles since Feb.1970

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« Reply #25 on: June 14, 2017, 06:36:20 pm »

Holy smokes! The bottle came today!!!
It's rock crystal, the bottle is old, it's 6.3cm tall, and if this is a fake it sure has me fooled!
There is glue on the base of the bottle that I am having a hard time removing so will retake that when I get it off.
I think it's rock crystal because when I turn it just right in the light there is a rainbow inclusion from the chip in the neck.


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Cathy
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« Reply #26 on: June 14, 2017, 07:08:29 pm »

Here's how I can tell the glass is old - there is pitting and lots of scratches on the surface.

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« Reply #27 on: June 14, 2017, 07:13:46 pm »

And here's the best I could do on taking a picture of the rainbow from the chip.

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« Reply #28 on: June 14, 2017, 07:43:48 pm »

Cathy,

    I compared the calligraphy and painting to the Ding Erzhong masterpiece I bought on 13.Mar. from Dr. Phillip Brachman's collection (Bonhams NYC), and it sure looks like the same calligraphy and stylistic painting details (shading, etc.).
I'm notoriously bad on identifying over the screen, but unless Steven doesn't agree (his 'eye' is so good), and feels it was copied by either a contemporary of Ding's or a modern artist (and I could see the first, possibly; I strongly doubt the second), you've got yourself a Ding Erzhong.
Tentative Congratulations.
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cshapiro
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« Reply #29 on: June 14, 2017, 07:56:10 pm »

Dear Joey,

Oh my gosh!!!
When I first laid eyes on it, my heart skipped a beat.. I swear!
And it just skipped another beat when I read your post.

I don't think I will be able to breath until Steven looks at it!!!

Update:
I'm still alive... barely.
I just went and looked up your bottle and it is magnificent! You just bought it three months ago! Congratulations!!!

The more I think about it... it's a hard pill to swallow to think that there are two bottles with the exact theme and message. There are only a couple of scenarios I can think of where he would copy a bottle, one would be that a person admired the original bottle so much they requested a copy, or maybe he liked the theme and wanted to repeat it.

On this bottle it strikes me that he must have been low on white paint because he used a flesh tone for the boys face and repeated that on the wall and the swan, whereas on the other one he used white on the face, the wall, and the swan.  That appears to be the only difference I can see between the two bottles.

The reds might appear to be off from the photographs, but when I put this bottle in the sunlight the red has that same orange tone.
 




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« Reply #30 on: June 14, 2017, 09:16:47 pm »

Wow.  Congrats Cathy!   

And one shocking thing is that this dispels the notion that Ding (and perhaps Zhou Le Yuan too) never repeated subjects.   
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cshapiro
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« Reply #31 on: June 14, 2017, 09:25:18 pm »

Thanks Pat!

I am still waiting to see what Steven thinks and so my heart is in my throat - so to speak until I hear from him.

I think that gold dust in my jade purse must have worked some magic for me - if it's true!

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« Reply #32 on: June 14, 2017, 09:31:00 pm »

Cathy,

This is fun!  I do see what you're talking about regarding the color of the wall and such being different... lines not as crisp either, but 

Got my fingers crossed for ya!

Rube.
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« Reply #33 on: June 14, 2017, 09:55:36 pm »

Thanks Rheuben! I will definitely bring this one if we ever get the chance to meetup in Nashville
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« Reply #34 on: June 15, 2017, 03:37:34 am »


I think that gold dust in my jade purse must have worked some magic for me - if it's true!


Cathy,

I may need to borrow that jade purse with the gold dust inside....
Could sure use some of your luck.

Tom
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« Reply #35 on: June 15, 2017, 05:59:40 am »

Guys,

    I am not sure I'd hold as 'gospel', the statement that Ding Erzhong never painted a subject twice. I'm sure he didn't do an exact copy ever, since, as a scholar artist, he would not have had a 'subject book' or 'pattern book', like Ye Zhongsan or Ma Shaoxuan.

   But if a friend had seen a bottle of Ding's, and expressed a strong preference for one close to it, it is not beyond the realm of possibility that Ding might have chosen to honour the request.

   I doubt that a male scholar would have made such a request, but Ding would have interacted with his hosts' families, albeit in a very circumscribed and circumspect fashion.

   But imagine a child or a woman (which in Chinese culture of the Qing Dynasty, would have been considered on a par; we are NOT talking the 21st C. West, where a woman runs the UK, another runs Germany, and 21 other countries have women leaders.), having seen such a treasure, and asking for one "just like that one''. I doubt Ding would have refused.

   And I know Zhou Leyuan repeated subjects, at least once. This is because I have seen two almost identical copies of my Rooster and chicks subject - mine from the White Wings collection, and another belonging to the Chester Beatty Library collection. Sadly, it's not included in their catalogue. I don't know why it wasn't - I asked Michael Hughes. Of course, the fact that 275 were illustrated out of 942 in the collection might have something to do with it.

Rube's comment has merit, which is why I would appreciate Steven's opinion.

Best,
Joey
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« Reply #36 on: June 15, 2017, 08:32:02 am »

Rube, the bottle arrived with a loose fitting top with a spoon (the horror) and the cork in the bottom (which appeared to have been there for a while)! I immediately removed both but the bottle was obviously not well cared for before it came in my possession. I can tell that cork knocking around in there did the bottle no favors!

Tom - seeing your bottles I think you already have had some amazing luck!!

Joey, I stayed up into the wee hours of the morning hoping to hear from Steven, but it occurs to me that he is in an unenviable position - it would be one thing to verify a bottle with a different theme, but verifying one with a repeated theme is truly sticking ones neck out I imagine because it would set a precedent.  Having you consider it original is quite enough for me. It is beyond a doubt the closest I will ever come to one!

This is really interesting information:
Quote
And I know Zhou Leyuan repeated subjects, at least once. This is because I have seen two almost identical copies of my Rooster and chicks subject - mine from the White Wings collection, and another belonging to the Chester Beatty Library collection.







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Cathy
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« Reply #37 on: June 15, 2017, 08:54:36 am »

Cathy,

I'd love to see it in person, so we'll make it happen someday!

Regarding the possibility of duplication of subjects on bottles, it really does make one wonder... I mean, another possibility of why one of these scholar artists might have painted a theme twice, it might simply be a way to practice a new theme?  You dabble in portraiture, no?  Don't you practice before you perfect?  If I build a new chair, I always do a practice piece, sometimes in lesser valuable wood, but I still practice...

Anyhow, your enthusiasm is AWESOME!

Cheers,

Rube.
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« Reply #38 on: June 15, 2017, 09:37:47 am »

Rube, yes I do! I love to paint, and many times with portraits I will do a study painting before doing a larger work so it common for me to paint something twice.
I also paint things twice if I do something on location - like a plein air painting - I might paint a smaller work in the field and bring it home to do a larger one.

I remember now that you do woodworking. You will have to share a link to some of your work!

Wink
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« Reply #39 on: June 15, 2017, 11:23:00 pm »

Dear Cathy,

First of all. I really impressed by the knowledge you have learned in such short period, I have seen a quite few of great bottles posted by you, Altho I did have a chance to post my comments one by one. Congratulation!!

I am glad that you post the hi-res photos of the ding signed bottle, so that we can have a better look at the bottle, and analyze it with details.

I have to say that bottle is a good one no matter its genuine nor not. and it worth the price you paid for.Smiley

I have to repeat one thing another time( Chinese people say, repeat three times if one thing is important.Smiley)" Ding Erzhong NEVER painted exact same bottle twice" Actually that is not only for Ding Erzhong, also for all the old masters, No old master painted exact same bottle twice. When I say same, which means the overall and detail layout of the paintings and the inscripts. Some of old master painted same motif again and again, but there would be some different layout here and there, the inscripts will be definitely different even the motif is same.  And Ding is especially the one who has more varieties on his painting since he is a scholar instead of some commercial artists like Ma shaoxuan and Ye family.

So based on only the reason above I can pretty much positive that bottle is not genuine.

But also, Let us go through the details of the bottle.

I have three comparisons for you, one is a comparison of the calligraphy. I have to admit some of characters are really close, but the ones circled with red was hesitated  written, and some of them are not even close to the fluency of Ding Erzhong's calligraphy, the calligraphy of Ding Erzhong is the best in the middle period artists, even better than Zhou Leyuan in my opinion, and his calligraphy is very consistent, I can't find any Genuine bottle with lower level calligraphy.

The second one is a tree leaves, the genuine one's strokes are very well organized, clean the neat, but the ones on your bottle are not well organized, even the painter was trying to copy every single strokes, but He can't  even copy the techniques Ding used. so it looks similar, but not there.

The third one is a overall looking of the landscape side, there are too many details not there to be a ding bottle, I don't have to point out one by one. I believe if you have a trained eye, you should be able to find out more than what i can do.

One more thing to point out that I am not sure if your bottle is rock crystal or not, but as I know that Ding NEVER paint snuff bottle in quartz. If you go through all the Ding bottles , every single one is glass bottle. I am not saying your bottle can not be a exceptional one, but with all the factors I have laid out. I would insist that bottle is not right one.

Sorry for being so mean and raining your parade, But I believe that you will find a genuine one in not so long future if you keeping learning like that, and that is the lesson you have to learn. BTW I have acquired my first ever Ding Erzhong bottle after 8 years studies, I will share with you later. And before shareing with you my Ding Erzhong bottle, I will have to share one fake Ding bottle I bought when I first got into snuff bottle collecting, I have to say its embarrassing, and its not even close as good as your bottle.Smiley

Best,

Steven


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