An Overview of Qing Glass

28 Fig. 105. Multi-colored overlay on a snowflake ground carved as a single overlay illustrating a fu lion in a rocky landscape. Fig. 106. Overlays in blue, ruby-red, green and purple on a white ground carved to illustrate sixteen mythical creatures in various stages of transformation of a carp into a dragon, Guangxu period. Bloch Collection. Fig. 107. Translucent white glass engraved on one side with three scholars and trees, the reverse and the area above the figures inscribed with the text from Su Shi ’ s Second Ode to the Red Cliff, 1890–1910 . Bloch Collection. century and one wonders how many other, undated bottles by the same skilled glassworkers are in our collections masquerading as earlier products. There would have been copious faking of Imperial glass bottles after the 1860s and, as yet, we may not be in a position to identify some of it. Such a note of caution might make a fitting ending to a subject so riddled with confusion as Qing glass, but four more bottles suggest themselves for inclusion. Figure 105 serves to represent a wide range of nineteenth-century versions of earlier styles. Most types were continuously produced, and overlays were no exception. With its subject of Pekinese dogs, this might be from the latter part of the Daoguang reign, but in any case it stands for a vast array of overlay bottles from the latter part of the Qing dynasty. Sometimes, like this, of reasonable quality, but not of the standards of the height of the art during the eighteenth century, and sometimes a great deal worse than this. One group can be dated accurately to the Guangxu period and is represented by figure 106 . Through other porcelain bottles with the same owner ’ s name on them, this bottle can be dated to the last two decades of the nineteenth century, and gives us some idea of the standard of glassmaking and carving at the time. The colors of the glass are excellent, but the carving is fairly crude and the pictorial grace wholly questionable, although

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