This incense burner is decorated with two five-clawed dragons frolicking with a flaming pearl amongst clouds and flames, beneath a narrow scroll border and above a wave base. The three legs bear animal faces above beast claws. The design is based on a legend of the dragon having nine sons which emerged in the Ming dynasty. One of the nine sons is named Suanni who resembles a lion and enjoys smoke, and thus appears often as a motif on incense burners.
Asian Art Department, AGNSW, January 2012
Tripod censer ('ding')
early 17th century
porcelain with underglaze blue decoration
11.0 x 8.7 cm
Gift from the J.H. Myrtle Collection 2000
Where the work was made
Shown in 3 exhibitions
Referenced in 2 publications
Jackie Menzies (Editor), The Asian Collections Art Gallery of New South Wales, 'The Marvel of Porcelain', Sydney, 2003, 121 (colour illus.).
Editor Unknown (Editor), Chinese pottery and porcelain, Sydney, 1951. cat.no. 65