Lot 44 A rare pale green and brown jade carving of an elephant and man

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拍卖公司:邦瀚斯香港
拍卖时间:2016-04-05

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分类: 瓷玉杂项--玉石器
尺寸: 10.5cm (4in) wide;
A rare pale green and brown jade carving of an elephant and man
Song Dynasty or later
The elephant carved with its head slightly turned, a swaying trunk between a pair of fitted tusks and a short thick tail, standing with the figure of a man using the bend of one lowered back leg to climb up its body on one side, the man detailed wearing high-waisted trousers and a rounded flat-crowned hat, the stone of pale grey-green with varying brown tones and opaque buff inclusions.
10.5cm (4in) wide
  • 宋或以後 青玉帶皮雕胡人戲象

    Published and Illustrated 出版:
    Art and Imitation in China, Hong Kong, 2006, pp.158-159, no.48
    《馳騁古今:中國藝術的仿摹與創新》,香港,2006年,頁158-159,編號48

    Exhibited 展覽:
    University Museum and Art Gallery, The University of Hong Kong (14 October - 17 December 2006)
    香港大學美術博物館,2006年10月14日至12月17日

    This group recalls an earlier portrayal of the monumental mammal with a foreigner naturalistically captured in the motion of rising from a seated posture, with the foreign mahout clambering up on one side of the elephant.

    The elephant represents strength, wisdom and prudence. Elephant, 象 xiang, is a pun for 'sign', written and pronounced exactly the same way. Riding on an elephant, 騎象 qixiang, is a homophone for 'may there be good fortune', 吉祥 jixiang.

    Large mammals such as the elephant and rhinoceros existed in Central and Southern China since the Shang and Zhou dynasties but they soon became extinct. This has been attested by archaeological evidence and depictions in archaic ritual bronzes of these periods. Such rare archaeological relics are housed in important museum collections around the world: see two examples of late Shang dynasty archaic bronze elephant-shaped zun in the Freer Gallery of Art, Washington D.C., and another in the Musée Guimet, Paris, illustrated in Zhongguo Qingtongqi Quanji. Shang 4, Beijing, 1998, pp.126 and 128, nos.129 and 131. Compare also an excavated example in the Hunan Provincial Museum, Hunan, unearthed at Shixingshan, Liling, Hunan Province in 1975, illustrated in ibid., Beijing, 1998, p.127, no.130.

    玉質青色偏灰,局部有褐斑。雕一大象直立於地,頭向右側轉,鼻微卷,長牙下垂,大象四肢粗壯,大步邁前,形似敦厚。一胡人踏象後腿,似欲攀上象身,形態生動有趣,與造型簡拙的玉象,相映精巧成趣。

    大象在中國向有審慎、智慧以及力量的象徵;「騎象」與「吉祥」諧音,此玉雕胡人騎象有和平吉祥的含義。

    現存宋代玉象非常稀少,本拍品實屬難得一見。自宋代開始,玉器仿古銅器的製作逐漸成為一個傳統,以後歷代亦有沿襲。宋代玉雕亦漸多以花鳥動物為題材,崇尚寫實,鏤雕和浮雕工藝。此胡人騎象玉雕之靈感有可能取自商代時期的青銅象尊,可參考三件商代晚期的青銅象尊,分別藏於美國弗利爾美術館、法國吉美亞洲藝術博物館和湖南省博物館,見《中國青銅器全集:商4》,北京,1998年,圖版129至131。
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