'Wucai' dish decorated with dragon and two phoenixes above the Immortal Isles in the Eastern sea
In the interior centre of this colourful dish is an ascending five-clawed dragon with its mane flying apart in the middle. Alongside the dragon are two descending phoenixes. Below them are three geometric designs arising from the wavy ocean, symbols of the sacred mountains of Penglai, Fangzhang and Yingzhou in the Bohai sea. At the top is a circle containing three bars, the first character in 'Book of Change' - Qian. Qian refers to the sky, the sun and male yang force. On the sides of the dish are animals under branches of flowering pomegranate trees whose seeds symbolise male heirs. On the exterior are ruyi (literally meaning 'as you wish') floral patterns.
Asian Art Department, AGNSW, January 2012
Dish with design of dragon and two phoenix above the Eastern seas
Dish with design of dragon and phoenixes
porcelain with 'wucai' (five colour) polychrome enamel decoration
4.0 x 27.0 cm
Where the work was made
Shown in 3 exhibitions
Chinese porcelain of the Ming and Ch'ing dynasties, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 18 Feb 1977–26 Jun 1977
Dragon (2012), Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 18 Jan 2012–06 May 2012
Conversations through the Asian collections, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 25 Oct 2014–28 Feb 2016
Referenced in 3 publications
J. Hepburn Myrtle, Chinese porcelain of the Ming and Ch'ing dynasties, Sydney, 1977, 23, 51 (illus.). cat. no. 29, plate nos. 12, 21
Jackie Menzies and Edmund Capon, Asian Collection Handbook, Art Gallery of New South Wales, 'Chinese Porcelain', pg. 30-41, Sydney, 1990, 34 (colour illus.).
Jackie Menzies (Editor), The Asian Collections Art Gallery of New South Wales, 'The Marvel of Porcelain', Sydney, 2003, 120 (colour illus.).