Pairs of celadon porcelain vases, Paris around 1760
Rare pair of "Melting" shaped vases with green celadon cover imitating jade.
The body of the vase is delicately molded and incised under the translucent cover, with peony flowers and stylized foliage inspired by ancient ceramics of the Song period.
The neck of the vase and its foot are set in a rocaille mount with acanthus braces in finely chased bronze and gilded with mercury.
The neck is decorated with two large handles.
Porcelain vases, China, Zhejiang province, Longquan kilns, Qing Dynasty, Quianlong reign (1736-1795).
The « rocaille » mount in bronze finely chased and gilded with mercury, Paris, around 1760.
Good condition, a crack on the body of one of the two vases (probably due to the drilling when mounting the bronze handles).
Height : 28 cm
Our view :
Ceramics imported from the Orient were highly sought after by the elite of the nobility in the middle of the 18th century because the secret of hard porcelain was not yet known in Europe.
Among the most prized pieces are the "celadons" whose shades of glaze imitate the translucent green hue of the mythical jade stone.
Made in China, on commission and for the court, they are of the greatest rarity, even in their country of origin.
A Parisian merchant, Lazare Duvaux, will make his specialty and will import these precious porcelains thanks to his important network in the East, during his existence he will even hold the quasi-monopoly.
His precious diary book allows us to know that he delivered about thirty of theme between 1748 and 1758, at a minimum price of 700 pounds, while Saxon porcelain vases were struggling to reach the sum of the 50 pounds.
In April 1750, to the Marquis de Voyer : Two pieces of old celadon porcelain, representing a plant with foliage, with the terraces gilded with ground gold, 720 pounds.
In January 1751 still to the Marquis du Voyer : A celadon porcelain vase, 960 pounds.
The following years he delivered Celadons to the Prince of Turenne, to the Duchess of Orleans, to the treasurer Mr. de Boulogne, to the Dauphine, but Duvaux's greatest client was without a doubt the Marquise de Pompadour, who was very fond of these delicately shaded porcelains and to whom he delivered about fifteen pieces in ten years.
The document also tells us that the realization of the bronze mounts was entrusted to the goldsmith Jean Claude Duplessis.
Still in August 1750, he delivers for the exorbitant sum of 3000 pounds two vases to the Marquis du Voyer : "Two large vases of celadon porcelain, mounted by Duplessis in ground gold bronze, 3000 l ".
The price reached is partly due to the size of the vases but also to the cost of the frame which required the conception of a drawing then a long work of adaptation to measure.
Duvaux mentions for the date of April 6, 1753 to have delivered to the marquise of Pompadour : "The circles with contours made for six different pieces of celadon porcelain in copper gilded with ground gold and two small bonnets with foliage".
He mentions several times these "bonnets" which are the contours made for the upper part of the vase, which is rare and much more expensive than the simple terraces we usually encounter.
The mounting of our vase is with "terrasse et bonnet", with a rocaille base and a symmetrical neck which announces the softened rocaille style which appeared around 1760 and of which Duplessis is one of the greatest representatives.
Designed in China from archaic forms and mounted on bronze in Paris in the purest French style, our vase is at the crossroads of Europe and Asia.
It is one the rare mounted celadons that have come down to us and represent to us the quintessence of the art object under the reign of Louis XV.
4 660 €