Chinese Snuff Bottle Discussion Forum 中國鼻煙壺討論論壇

Public Forum Categories and Boards => Inside Painted Chinese Snuff Bottles / Early, Middle and Modern Period Bottles 内画鼻烟壶/早期,中期,现代 => Topic started by: Solid_Snake on November 13, 2022, 04:11:12 am



Title: 5 painted bottles - updated - new bottle added for your opinion
Post by: Solid_Snake on November 13, 2022, 04:11:12 am
Hello,

while monitoring french live auctions some time ago I came across these painted "crystal" bottles, they cost around 50/60 euros with fees so I bought to see. What do you think ? the makers mark is illegible and the other has no calligraphy, it looks like one of the birds is wearing a hat (lol).  ;D

thanks
Thomas


Title: Re: 2 crystal painted bottles
Post by: richy88 on November 13, 2022, 07:03:04 am
Hi Thomas

The first bottle is signed Zhou Leyuan and dated spring, 1889.

However, the style and quality of the calligraphy is not from him.

For your information.

Regards.


Richard


Title: Re: 2 crystal painted bottles
Post by: bambooforrest on November 13, 2022, 07:06:08 am
Thomas, I agree with Richard it is not by the hand of the master. The second bottle is modern....John


Title: Re: 2 crystal painted bottles
Post by: Joey on November 13, 2022, 11:50:45 am
Dear Thomas,

   First off, what do you mean by 'crystal'?
Rock Crystal, or Quartz?
Lead Crystal?
The first bottle definitely looks to me like Quartz.
The second one, I'm not so sure.

Now, the first is signed and dated as Richard described.
But I believe it is 1980s/1990s, when an artist or artists in the PRC
were trying to fake Masters' works, but often made no effort to
really copy their styles or signatures.
We find Zhou Leyuan, Ding Erzhong, Ma Shaoxuan and Ye Zhongsan
among the masters copied.
I've never seen a Ma Shaoxian or a Bi Rongjiu or a Tang Zichuan faked...
Or a Yan Yutian, for that matter.

It could be Middle Period, and the trees and the structure in the distance
behind the badger/bear/ mutant giant rat (?!), with the non-eagle bird in the tree,
are a good attempt at copying Middle Period [ca.1870-1930] IPSB painting.

But the animal on the ground and the fact that they replaced the obligatory
eagle with another bird, makes me believe it is a modern copy.

Richard,  how does the calligraphy compare to that of contemporary artists,
as compared to that of Middle Period artists?
It looks to me to be modern, but your eye is much better than mine.

And the second looks to be a mixture of IPSB and enamelling.
And the top hat on the bird is quirky, to say the least.
Best,
Joey



Title: Re: 2 crystal painted bottles
Post by: George on November 13, 2022, 03:10:43 pm
I will guess your first bottle is painted by Yan Yutian. He like painting birds, and the calligraphy also looks like his.

The second bottle is a Shandong painted bottle. Steven once told about these and that they are from a group of artist who painted just prior to Zhou Leyuan. Tried to find his post referencing these, but no luck.

I have had a few similar ones and have been dating them 1850 to 1880 because of what I recall Steven telling.

https://snuffbottlejournal.blogspot.com/2014/03/amber-glass-inside-painted-chinese.html
https://snuffbottlejournal.blogspot.com/2012/03/nice-old-medicine-bottle-turned-snuff.html


Title: Re: 2 crystal painted bottles
Post by: Joey on November 13, 2022, 03:31:39 pm
George,
After I read what you wrote, I looked again, and the first one
is certainly in the palette and style of Yan Yutian. And I myself
had bottles by Yan Yutian with a Zhou Leyuan signature.
The second could be old, but what is with the bird sporting a
top hat.
Joey


Title: Re: 2 crystal painted bottles
Post by: Fiveroosters aka clayandbrush on November 14, 2022, 11:09:11 am
Dear  George  and  Joey,
you know that I am not  expert on  IP bottles, but I am very happy because when I saw  the first bottle,  just after  it has been posted, I thought that the hand was  that of Yan Yutian (the only artist that I recognize  ;D) especially becasue of the big animal, quite typical from him. But then I did check the signature and  it was not from him, so I have not commented.
Kind regards
Giovanni


Title: Re: 2 crystal painted bottles
Post by: George on November 15, 2022, 01:24:42 am
Dear  George  and  Joey,
you know that I am not  expert on  IP bottles, but I am very happy because when I saw  the first bottle,  just after  it has been posted, I thought that the hand was  that of Yan Yutian (the only artist that I recognize  ;D) especially becasue of the big animal, quite typical from him. But then I did check the signature and  it was not from him, so I have not commented.
Kind regards
Giovanni


Great job recognizing it Giovanni!


Title: Re: 2 crystal painted bottles
Post by: Joey on November 15, 2022, 09:01:24 am
Dear Giovanni,

    I agree with George.
Especially since I, who have over a dozen Yan Yutians, and have been studying
and collecting IPSBs for over 30 years, DIDN'T... ::) :o :-[

Dear George,
    About the second one, I'll defer to Steven's 'eye'.
I see that the bottle itself looks like an old one.
But I don't recognise the style of painting.

It could be the link between the Early Period IPSBs painted
in Guangdong by Gan Xuanwen etc. [they worked between 1797 and 1830 or so],
and the Middle Period IPSBs, from Zhou Leyuan and his contemporaries.

But I've no knowledge about them.
Best,
Joey


Title: Re: 2 crystal painted bottles
Post by: Bruno on November 21, 2022, 11:25:36 am
Dear all ,
What a pleasure to share with you …. Since a long time .
I completely agree with George, it is for my part à bottle painted by Yan Yutian. I recognize his style very well having myself a few bottles of him , including one signed by Zhou Leyuan.


Title: Re: 2 crystal painted bottles
Post by: Joey on November 22, 2022, 05:50:16 am
Dear all ,
What a pleasure to share with you …. Since a long time .
I completely agree with George, it is for my part à bottle painted by Yan Yutian. I recognize his style very well having myself a few bottles of him , including one signed by Zhou Leyuan.


Dear Bruno,

 NOT "signed by Zhou Leyuan", but 'one bearing the false signature of Zhou Leyuan'. ;)
I also have a number of Yan Yutian bottles which he signed with a false signature of
Zhou Leyuan.
He did this in order to sell to buyers, most probably Western tourists, who would not
know the difference, but had been told that Zhou Leyuan's bottles were more expensive,
and thus get Yan Yutian a better price.
A number of artists did this at the time.
And a group did it in the 1980s...
Best,
Joey


Title: Re: 2 crystal painted bottles
Post by: Bruno on November 23, 2022, 01:30:56 pm
Dear Joey ,
yes of course , you are absolutely right : I expressed myself very badly and you were right to correct me .


Title: Re: 2 crystal painted bottles
Post by: Joey on November 23, 2022, 02:06:11 pm
Dear Bruno,

   I have a mild case of Aspergers, so feel obligated to correct mistakes.
Also, there are less than reputable people, who would take your innocent
error, and use it for their own gain.
Thank you for your understanding.
Best,
Joey


Title: Re: 2 crystal painted bottles
Post by: Solid_Snake on November 24, 2022, 11:28:26 am
Hello dear friends,

Thank you all for your comments and help.

I learned things (I don't know anything about it originally) thank you again, it's very interesting.

after looking on the forum and on the internet we can not say that my copy is one of the best creation of Yutian lol
I would have preferred it to be a learning bottle rather than a quickly painted model for tourists.

@Joey
I wrote "crystal" but they may be glass...I looked with a magnifying glass without seeing any bubbles and the weight is a bit heavy so I thought of crystal. I believe we prefer to say "quartz"?

thanks to your messages I took two new bottles at auction, always at a low price so as not to be "cheated".

for the transparent news the auction house specified in its announcement that the signature was not from the master. another bottle made by a student?

the second in amber glass, your opinion on these inscriptions and bottles?

thank you

best
Thomas


Title: Re: 4 painted bottles - update
Post by: richy88 on November 24, 2022, 08:11:28 pm
Hi Thomas

The amber bottle is signed Xue Cheng Cai.

For your reference.

Regards.



Richard


Title: Re: 4 painted bottles - update
Post by: bambooforrest on November 25, 2022, 12:10:35 pm
I am posting this amber glass bottle because I think it is similar to the ones Thomas and George posted [62mm].


Title: Re: 2 crystal painted bottles
Post by: George on November 26, 2022, 03:39:59 pm


@Joey
I wrote "crystal" but they may be glass...I looked with a magnifying glass without seeing any bubbles and the weight is a bit heavy so I thought of crystal. I believe we prefer to say "quartz"?


I am pretty sure this bottle is quartz. I can see what look like natural inclusions.


Title: Re: 2 crystal painted bottles
Post by: Joey on November 26, 2022, 06:01:48 pm
George,
 
  If you mean the second of the two bottles in:
 on: November 13, 2022, 04:11:12 am »

I think you are correct. The one with the weird, hat-wearing bird,
does look like a quartz bottle of the type seen during the Early Period
{Gan Xuanwen etc.].
Best,
Joey




@Joey
I wrote "crystal" but they may be glass...I looked with a magnifying glass without seeing any bubbles and the weight is a bit heavy so I thought of crystal. I believe we prefer to say "quartz"?


I am pretty sure this bottle is quartz. I can see what look like natural inclusions.


Title: Re: 2 crystal painted bottles
Post by: George on November 27, 2022, 03:20:35 pm
George,
 
  If you mean the second of the two bottles in:
 on: November 13, 2022, 04:11:12 am »


Yes, that one.


Title: Re: 4 painted bottles - update
Post by: Joey on November 27, 2022, 07:11:49 pm
I agree with you, George.

But that just dates the vessel.
The question is, when was it painted?
But if Steven attributed this style to ca. 1830-1870,
I would certainly trust his judgement.
Best,
Joey


Title: Re: 4 painted bottles - update
Post by: Solid_Snake on December 19, 2022, 12:38:07 pm
Hello guys,

@Richard,
Thank you a lot for your identification.

@John,
Thank you for sharing your bottle, I love it.

Best regards
Thomas


Title: Re: 4 painted bottles - new bottle identification?
Post by: Solid_Snake on December 21, 2022, 02:33:59 am
Hello
Can you tell me the artist and traduction of the calligraphy?
Thank you


Title: Re: 4 painted bottles - new bottle identification?
Post by: Joey on December 21, 2022, 02:48:12 am
It is falsely signed ’Zhou Leyuan’,
But I can’t tell from the other side if it
is a bottle by Yan Yutian and Middle Period
(ca. 1870-1948) in late Qing or early Republican China ,
or one of a large number of Fakes made ca. 1970-1990,
in the Peoples’ Republic of China (PRC).

My first reaction was ‘modern fake’,
based on the obviously fake signature of Zhou Leyuan,
And the painting that is obviously NOT that Master’s work.
Then, seeing the obvious palette of Yan Yutian on the reverse,
I thought, “Possibly Yan Yutian and ca. 1890s to 1910s”.
But the PRC artists faking older bottles could copy Yan Yutian’s
palette, just as they could copy Zhou Leyuan’s signature.

I think it is fake.
What do others think?
Best,
Happy Hanuka,
Joey


Title: Re: 4 painted bottles - new bottle identification?
Post by: Solid_Snake on December 21, 2022, 04:52:26 am
Hello Joey,
Thank you for you quick response.
Sold at auction as "strange and not usual calligraphy of Zhou Luyan but Qing dynasty period".
I've paid low price but I hope it's not a modern repro 😔

Happy Hanuka to you.
Best
Thomas


Title: Re: 4 painted bottles - new bottle identification?
Post by: Joey on December 21, 2022, 05:38:41 am
Dear Thomas,

  I keep going back and forth between Yan Yutian and ca. 1890-1930,
And ca.1980-1990.
Let’s see what George, Charll, Richard and Giovanni say.
Best,
Joey


Title: Re: 4 painted bottles - new bottle identification?
Post by: rpfstoneman on December 21, 2022, 05:54:05 pm

Thomas,

This is not one of my strong collecting areas, so I'll have to defer to others with more knowledge than myself.  That said, my quick look is that it appears to be a period copy produced in the 1st half of the 20th century.

Charll   


Title: Re: 4 painted bottles - new bottle identification?
Post by: Joey on December 21, 2022, 09:09:28 pm

Thomas,

This is not one of my strong collecting areas, so I'll have to defer to others with more knowledge than myself.  That said, my quick look is that it appears to be a period copy produced in the 1st half of the 20th century.

Charll   

Dear Charll,

  Your comment confused me.
We know snuff bottles with fake Zhou Leyuan signatures were produced
in 2 periods:
1. Ca. 1890 - 1930, by artists from Ye Zhongsan the Elder down to a whole bunch of lesser artists. If it is from this period, most probably Yan Yutian is the artist. His palette, as seen on the side without calligraphy, is quite distinct.
2. Ca. 1970 - 1990, by artists to help the PRC get foreign currency, and then, after 1985, to help themselves economically. We know that Suo Zhenhai made a bunch of fake Zhou Leyuan-signed bottles.
A number were displayed in the collection exhibited at the Chinese University of Hong Kong Art Gallery during the 2014 ICSBS Hong Kong
Convention, with that wonderful catalogue of the collector’s Suo Zhenhai
snuff bottles.

So are you saying the bottle is from category 1 or category 2?
Best,
Joey


Title: Re: 4 painted bottles - new bottle identification?
Post by: richy88 on December 21, 2022, 10:28:02 pm
Hi all

I think this is not a genuine Zhou Leyland bottle.

Regards.


Richard


Title: Re: 4 painted bottles - new bottle identification?
Post by: rpfstoneman on December 21, 2022, 10:56:35 pm

Joey,

Category 1.  It looks to be a middle period bottle and as discussed a copy of one of the better known artists.  I thought Yan Yutian as as well, which was the first artist that came to mind, but it just seems off for his work as well.

Charll


Title: Re: 4 painted bottles - new bottle identification?
Post by: Joey on December 22, 2022, 01:37:31 am
Dear Charll,

   You are right!
It is indeed Middle Period, ca. 1895 - 1945,
But is either Yan Yutian on a very bad day,
or some other artist doing a poor imitation of
his work and of Zhou Leyuan’s signature.
That is why I was waffling between Yan Yutian
and a bottle from the 1980s.
Thank you,
Joey


Title: Re: 4 painted bottles - new bottle identification?
Post by: George on December 23, 2022, 07:01:11 am

Joey,

Category 1.  It looks to be a middle period bottle and as discussed a copy of one of the better known artists.  I thought Yan Yutian as as well, which was the first artist that came to mind, but it just seems off for his work as well.

Charll

I agree Charll  :)


Title: Re: 4 painted bottles - new bottle identification?
Post by: Joey on December 23, 2022, 08:05:24 am
My problem with it NOT being Yan Yutian,
Is thst no other artists copied his palette,
To my knowledge.
Falsely signing Zhou Leyuan’s signature, at least a dozen artists.
But copying Yan Yutian’s palette and style?
None come to mind.
But since  the artists were commercial,
and had  3 levels for painting in quartz;
And 3 levels for painting in glass.
Possibly this was Yan Yutian’s cheapest quality in glass.
Best,
Joey


Title: Re: 4 painted bottles - new bottle identification?
Post by: Tom B. on December 25, 2022, 06:57:08 pm
Dear Thomas and All,

Thank you for listing these very different Inside Painted Snuff Bottles.  The most interesting to me was the late Early School bottle with the two doves (bird in a top hat) and a Pekinese dog on the reverse. I noticed that nobody questioned the decoration so I decided to do some research before commenting.  What I found were some very interesting facts as to why that type of decoration became so popular.

I didn't find any examples of Inside Painted Bottles being sold or published in my research, but I found several examples of Imperial Daoguang Mark & Period porcelain snuff bottles from various important collections.  The following is a link to one sold by Christie's Auction New York in September 2007 as part of the Meriem Collection
https://www.christies.com/lot/lot-4952413 (https://www.christies.com/lot/lot-4952413)



Title: Re: 4 painted bottles - new bottle identification?
Post by: Tom B. on December 25, 2022, 07:30:44 pm
There was a lot essay following the description, that is well worth the read. It is as follows:

"The present example belongs to a group of finely painted bottles from the Daoguang period which were made in sets for the Court to distribute as gifts. It is decorated with pairs of doves on both sides, although it was not uncommon for some bottles to be painted with doves on one side, and Pekinese dogs on the other.

It would appear that the Daoguang Emperor and his consort were fond of doves and small dogs, respectively, so the two subjects were popular on Imperial snuff bottles of the period. According to Geoffrey R. Sayer (Tao Ya or Pottery Refinements, London, 1959, p. 123, no. 722), "Cheng Miao [the Daoguang Emperor] was fond of pigeons; his exalted concubine was fond of little dogs. That is why many of the dishes of the period have pictures of these two creatures."

Paired doves, like other paired creatures, suggest conjugal bliss. As a rule, one of the creatures is light and one dark, presumably to mirror the yin/yang balance. This is certainly one of the more effective and successful decorative designs of the Imperial kilns, with the simplicity of the shapes of the doves set against the grassy ground.

A Daoguang-marked enameled porcelain bottle with very similar design, from the J & J Collection, was sold in these rooms, 29 March 2006, lot 15. Another example decorated with a pair of doves on one side and a pair of Pekinese dogs on the reverse is in the Palace Museum, Beijing, and is illustrated in Snuff Bottles. The Complete Collection of Treasures of the Palace Museum, p. 227, no. 348."

Since there were so many of these Imperial bottles circulating among the elite, it would be logical that contemporary copies would be made.  It is impossible to tell when they began to copy these porcelain snuff bottles, but we can assume that they would be no earlier the early 1820's and lose interest shortly after the end of Daoguang's reign.

Best regards and Seasons Greetings to all,

Tom B.


Title: Re: 4 painted bottles - new bottle identification?
Post by: Joey on December 26, 2022, 12:16:57 am
Dear Tom B.,

   Thank you for the info.
Do you have any idea why one dove has a top hat?
Merry Christmas and Happy Hanuka,
Joey


Title: Re: 4 painted bottles - new bottle identification?
Post by: Tom B. on December 27, 2022, 12:54:24 pm
Dear Joey,

Thank you for the Christmas wishes and Happy Hanuka to you too. 

Possible explanations:
1. the author was working a rush job with poor lighting - moonlighting from his day job?
2. He was making it for a British soldier around the time of the Opium Wars
3. Or it is anyone's guess.

We will never know for sure, so I just view the spirit of the decoration as an homage to the decoration favored by the Emperor.

All the best in the coming year,

Tom B.





Title: Re: 4 painted bottles - new bottle identification?
Post by: Joey on December 27, 2022, 04:46:07 pm
Dear Tom B.,

   
   2. is possible
and 3. is Reasonable,
but your assumption as to the homage to the Emperor is also possible,
but improbable, since the Han Chinese in the south were not great fans of the
Manchu Qing Emperors in Beijing.

It could have been a veiled slight of the Emperor, 'His' Dove with a European top hat,
to show his weakness vis a vis the Europeans.
Especially after the defeats the Qing Court suffered during the Opium Wars.

Or even  a nod to the Taiping Pretender, who was known to have an affectation for European
clothing and other aspects of European culture, and who had adopted a bastardised version
of Christianity [including portraying himself as Jesus' younger brother!].

These flights of fancy are fun, and pace #3. It is indeed anyone's guess.... ::) :o ;D

Best to you and All
for the Civil New Year next Sunday.
Joey


Title: Re: 4 painted bottles - new bottle identification?
Post by: Solid_Snake on December 28, 2022, 11:55:55 am
Hello guys,

Thank you all for your participation Joey, Charll, George, Richard, Tom B, I enjoy reading and learning from this forum.

for the hat of the bird, I first thought the hat was just a painter's mistake in his painting but suggestions of Tom B and Joey are interesting and fun.

I found by chance a bottle similar to the last one I posted, courtesy of the royal museum of mariemont in Belgium, the link here

http://collections.artemis.cfwb.be/?queries=query=selectfacet=Collection=Mus%C3%A9e%20royal%20de%20Mariemont&query=Having%20an%20image,Creator,Sorting%20fields,Collection,Title,Inventory%20number,Objecttype,Location%20type,Room,PSO%20level,Location%20type&showtype=list&metatagid=undefined&metaTagTitle=CollectionConnection&metaTagDescription=Results%20of%20search%20query#/query/65b9abbf-c97f-4fce-a23a-3b8cc1cb2a2d

And a better photo of mine


Title: Re: 4 painted bottles - new bottle identification?
Post by: Joey on December 28, 2022, 05:21:45 pm
Uh, All I found on that site [Royal Museum in Belgium],
is a bunch of weapons and other stuff the Belgians stole from
the former Belgian Congo.

At least they didn't post the pigmies and other African people
they'd murdered and stuffed [taxidermy] around 1906.
I saw that in the museum in Brussels while visiting with a friend from Toronto
in July 1975 [his relative, a Holocaust survivor, worked there, and got us into the
storerooms; I wish she hadn't...] and it took a long time to get it out of my thoughts.

Best,
Joey


Title: Re: 4 painted bottles - new bottle identification?
Post by: Tom B. on December 28, 2022, 09:01:50 pm
Dear Joey,

I was able to find it after some hunting:

http://collections.artemis.cfwb.be/?queries=query=selectfacet=Collection=Mus%C3%A9e%20royal%20de%20Mariemont&query=Having%20an%20image,Creator,Sorting%20fields,Collection,Title,Inventory%20number,Objecttype,Location%20type,Room,PSO%20level,Location%20type&showtype=list&metatagid=undefined&metaTagTitle=CollectionConnection&metaTagDescription=Results%20of%20search%20query#/query/a00ed0f1-87af-4ed6-8698-e74a373c874f (http://collections.artemis.cfwb.be/?queries=query=selectfacet=Collection=Mus%C3%A9e%20royal%20de%20Mariemont&query=Having%20an%20image,Creator,Sorting%20fields,Collection,Title,Inventory%20number,Objecttype,Location%20type,Room,PSO%20level,Location%20type&showtype=list&metatagid=undefined&metaTagTitle=CollectionConnection&metaTagDescription=Results%20of%20search%20query#/query/a00ed0f1-87af-4ed6-8698-e74a373c874f)

The description states that the other side (not pictured) has two doves on a rock with a Pekinese below similar to the decoration on Thomas' bottle, but no mention of the inscription.

Best regards,

Tom B.


Title: Re: 4 painted bottles - new bottle identification?
Post by: Joey on December 29, 2022, 07:25:09 pm
I'll take your word for it, Tom B.
It's 03:30am and I've still to write to our in-house accountant about something.
Best,
Joey


Title: Re: 4 painted bottles - new bottle identification?
Post by: Solid_Snake on January 13, 2023, 11:46:35 am
Hello guys,
I've bought this bottle today from US auctions, it's a late 20th bottle or older? What do you think?
Thank you
Best
Thomas


Title: Re: 5 painted bottles - updated - new bottle added for your opinion
Post by: Joey on January 13, 2023, 03:36:12 pm
Dear Thomas,

    It is from the period 1985 to within a month of being sold.
The style of surrounding a figure with calligraphy,
NEVER existed in bottles even as recently as 1975.
It is post Cultural Revolution.

And the style of painting is also very modern.
Having said that, it looks very nice.
Best,
Joey


Title: Re: 5 painted bottles - updated - new bottle added for your opinion
Post by: richy88 on January 13, 2023, 11:23:05 pm
Hi Thomas

Nice bottle.

This bottle is painted by Peng Qi, an artist from the Ji School in Hebei and dated 1997.

The subject of this bottle is two female writers/poets from the Qing dynasty and their works.

The first is Wu Zao and the other is Chen Duansheng.

For your reference.

Regards.



Richard


Title: Re: 5 painted bottles - updated - new bottle added for your opinion
Post by: Solid_Snake on January 14, 2023, 02:31:25 am
Thank you Joey. It's good to know.

Thank you Richard, you're the Holly Bible of snuff bottles artists  :D
Peng Qi is a man or woman because I've found the both in Google searches?

Best
Thomas