An unusual Chinese sépia and en grisaille “Fortune Teller” sauceboat. Qianlong period

Of European silver shape with deeply scalloped rims and molded edges, decorated en grisaille, sepia and gilt, in an unusual color choice, with a scene inspired in the engraving The gipsy Fortune Teller, by John Smith (1652-1743). A European  gentleman, dismounted from his horse, accompanied by two young men, presents his hand to a fortune-teller. The woman has a child laced at her back and between her and the gentleman two dogs seem to observe the scene. Unlike the original engraving, the Chinese artist interpreted the nobleman holding the gypsy fortune-teller’s hand and not the other way round. The sauceboat has a spearhead bordure.

Period :
Qianlong (1735-1795), circa 1750
9 in. / 3.93 in. (23 cm / 10 cm)
Reference :

Related works

A pair of sauceboats were in the J.L. Binder Collection (Christie’s London, 17 june 2003, lot 167)

Pieces with this decoration are in the Naumkeag Museum (USA, Stockbridge MA) ; in the British Museum, published by Regina Krahl and Jessica Harrison-Hall in Ancient Chinese Trade Ceramics in the British Museum, London, 1994, p. 166, no. 71 ; in the Musée de la Compagnie des Indes (France, Lorient) from the Hervouët Collection, in the Victoria & Albert Museum (Rose Kerr, Luisa E. Mengoni, Chinese Export Ceramics, London, V&A Publishing, 2011, p.54, pl.67),

Others pieces were in the Motahedded Collection (Sotheby’s NYC, 30 january 1985, lot 230), in the Leo & Doris Hodroff Collection (Christie’s NYC, 26 january 2008,, lot 352), in the Angelo Cerqueira Caaldas Collection (Lisbon), sold at Sotheby’s London, 8 may 1990, lot 243.

A plate, from Cohen & Cohen was in the Alves Collection and published by Paulo & Filomena Cunha Alves in From East To West The Quest For Chinese Export Porcelain With Western Themes (1695-1815), p. 230, no. 142.

By appointment only, 10th arrondissement, Paris. / +33 (0)6 26 57 59 87

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