Large 19th C Famille Noire Mille Fleur Chinese Astrology Theme Porcelain Charger
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Large 19th C Famille Noire Mille Fleur Chinese Astrology Theme Porcelain Charger:
(DESCRIPTION UPDATED) Of Night and Days, Four Seasons, and 12 Months of the Year: A Very RareOriental Astrology Famille Noire Porcelain Charger
Up for sale is a gorgeous circa 19th century Chinese famille noir mille fleurs plate / charger. The front of the plate is decorated numerous flowers and florets on black background. A pair of foo dogs sit opposite to each other on two sides of the plate. There are two concentric rings of Yinyang symbols, one on the outer border and another surrounding the inner medallion. The rich colors of enamel glazes range in green, pink, yellow, arbigiene and black etc.The back of the plate is celadonish white porcelain left un-decorated. It seems the decoration of this plate has some astronomical elements. This is however not a simple famille noir floral plate. The design of this charge seem to have hidden meanings related to Oriental astrology. Notice there the 12 circles of Yinyang symbols throughout the charger, 8 on the outside circle, and 4 on inside circle. They probably symbolize the phases of the Moon of 12 months of the year, whereas the Yin and Yang representing wax and wane of the moon phases each month; there are 4 kinds of flowers on the plate: the purple peonies, a sign of Spring; the large white lotus with green leaves, symbol of Summer; large yellow chrysanthemums, symbol of Autumn; the small pink plum flowers, symbol of Winter. Notice the straight alignment of three large lotus wreaths (with four flours each facing different direction) across the plate in the middle, which may symbolize the Equinox. The two foo dogs, one black and one white, sitting on the opposite side of each other, perpendicular to the lotus wreath alignment, could be related to the Oriental mythology that eclipses are caused by heavenly dogs trying to eat the sun (or moon). The small pink plum flowers look like little stars that adore the night sky in the background. Close examination indicates the placement of the flowers are carefully done, of which the meaning is yet to be understood. Certainly the black (noire) background may symbolize night background. One another interesting feature about this plate is the application of lustre white glaze used for white flowers that have a light sheen of mother of pearl like quality, which is a rare use in Oriental porcelain before modern times. This type of pearly lustre glazes were known to have been used by the English porcelain maker Wedgwood in early 19th century. Its presence on this charger indicates Occidental influence on Oriental porcelain. All those features make this piece of porcelain very fascinating.
Measure: approx. 12" in diameter.Age: the charger is unmarked. But judging from the aged glaze, we think it is late 19th century or earlier. Unmarked.Condition: excellent. The foot rim has some age-related nicks and wear offs. There are also some tiny rub off of glazes from front rim.Estimate: $ 250-- $600.00.
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