A carved qingbai 'chilong' pattern bowl

宋 十一至十二世紀    青白刻螭龍紋盌

The bowl is finely potted with gently rounded sides rising to a rim lightly notched to form six lobes, all supported on a low tapered foot with narrow footrim. The interior is deftly carved with a pair of chilong, each with sinuous body, bifurcated tail and turned feline head, chasing each other in the well of the bowl around a squarish cloud-like element in the slightly recessed centre. A glaze of very light greenish-blue is applied overall, pooling to a deeper tone in the recesses of the carving. The foot has an unglazed area on the underside, showing the fine white ware and traces of the firing support.

Sotheby’s New York, “Monochrome”, 15th September 2015, lot 52

Chilong, smooth-bodied rather feline dragons, are seen mostly on Han dynasty jades, and their appearance on porcelain, as here, would have felt distinctly archaistic to someone from the Song dynasty. A comparable  bowl is in the Museum of Oriental Ceramics, Osaka, illustrated by Stacey Pierson in Qingbai Ware: Chinese Porcelain of the Song and Yuan Dynasties, no. 21, p. 64. Another is illustrated by Rose Kerr, Song Through 21st Century EyesFig 2-27, p.122. 

Dimensions: Height: 21.5 cm, 8 ½ inches

Date: Song dynasty (960-1279), 11th/12th century

Stock No. 2139

Price: On Request