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Vase, Qing dynasty (1644-1911)

Vase, Qing dynasty (1644-1911)

Vase, Qing dynasty (1644-1911), Reign of the Kangxi Emperor (1662-1722). China; Jiangxi province. Porcelain. The Avery Brundage Collection, B60P64.

The overglaze red and gold drawing on this piece lavishly depict the desire for longevity and wealth. A character for longevity written in seal script in a medallion appears on four sides of the neck. Four panels, each embracing flowers, symmetrically encircle the shoulder. Three large goldfish leading three smaller goldfish swimming through waterweeds are painted on the body. The goldfish is a symbol for the fulfillment of wishes for wealth in one’ s house (jiyu mantang), because the characters for goldfish and gold-jade are homophones. The application of gold and red on a blue ground often decorate such large imperial vases of the Kangxi period (Palace Mus. 1989: 92-3).