help me out with this old(?) pot

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help me out with this old(?) pot

Post  Russell Coker on Wed Jun 27, 2012 3:51 pm

Marcus's "Patina..." thread got me to thinking of a pot I found in an antique store here in Mobile. I thought I'd dredge up an old thread of mine about it but I couldn't find it. I suppose it was lost when the site was hacked and we started over. I've kicked this one around with Peter and Ryan privately, and while Peter came up with similar examples we never found one like this.

So here's the story...

I saw tons of antique pots in Japan, but none that were made of porcelain. One thing about these old Chinese pots was that they almost always have different proportions than modern pots. They tend to be more narrow front to back when compared to their length, and some were quite deep too. A few years ago I was walking through an antique mall and spied those odd proportions sitting on the floor. Turns out it's a big porcelain pot with drainage holes that were made before firing, with an opaque celadon glaze. It has a few chips too, and is 19" long, 11" front to back and 9.5" tall.







When I got home with it I started looking through a Chinese website of antique pots and found this porcelain pot...





Needless to say I almost fell out of my chair. My pot has the exact same glaze and design, same feet, same brace marks, same drainage holes in the same place, and the same overspray on the inside from when the glaze was blown onto the pot. One thing that's obviously different is that my pot isn't warped/sagging. Also, there are no signs that it has ever been outside (staining on the inside and "patina"). I guess it's agreed that patina happens to glazed pots much faster outside exposed to the elements, as opposed to the same pot sitting on a shelf or inside a closet. But I think we also know that patina can be faked and doesn't automatically mean something is old, and not everything that looks brand new actually is new. I'm hoping with the increased traffic on the IBC that maybe someone out there has seen an example like this pot and can tell me something about it. I have a friend who is quite knowledgeable about bonsai and Asian antiques and she thinks it's an old pot from Guangzhou. I have no idea. Is someone using an old mould and still making this pot? If so, where are the rest of them? All I was told is that the pot came from the estate of a family in the Carolinas that collected Asian art and traveled there to do so. There are no marks on the bottom, and no "Made in China" sticker either.

Anyone?

Russell Coker
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Re: help me out with this old(?) pot

Post  Russell Coker on Thu Jun 28, 2012 11:55 pm



Really??? No one????

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Re: help me out with this old(?) pot

Post  Poink88 on Fri Jun 29, 2012 12:18 am

Russell,

If you bounced this back between you, Peter, and Ryan and you still came up with nothing...it will be hard to find someone else here who can help. Sorry.

It is a nice pot (though not my cup of tea). Mind sharing us how much the antique Chinese pot costs? Wink

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Re: help me out with this old(?) pot

Post  Russell Coker on Fri Jun 29, 2012 2:28 am


Yes, I know. I was hoping some of the new folks (outside the USA) might recognize it. And I do have a pm lead, so I'm waiting...

I paid less the 200$ for this "antique". I like the pot, and you don't see much in porcelain this big, so I figured it was OK either way. I've been watching ebay for a long time now and I've never seen anything like it. Most porcelain pots don't have holes and are glazed on the inside, they were bulb pots.


Last edited by Russell Coker on Fri Jun 29, 2012 3:27 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Re: help me out with this old(?) pot

Post  Ryan B on Fri Jun 29, 2012 8:05 am

Russell,
For the elucidation and erudition of all, I'll spew forth my amateur claptrap well again. There's no guarentee
That the pot you found pics of is actually antique. It only takes a few short decades...for porcelain to color like this, especially rougher porcelain, which this seems to be. These pots obviously came from the same kiln(90%, because molds are often sold), and may be the same age, but, is yours crazy valuable...can it be identified? Random chance on the ID because it isn't supa valuable, in my eyes and mind, the fact that you easily found an identical piece means its a production pot...and there are signs of mass production...handmade and really valuable pieces, no matter the era, Chinese or Japanese, were nearly always stamped or signed. If they weren't, then it's not the piece itself that's valuable, but it's patina, the dignity of age apparent. Contrary to pop
Opinion however, great patina does not increase any but top shelf pots a significant amount, under real market conditions. A brand new Gekkou with an awesome painting that is 6" is a grand. A 30 year old Gekkou, where the painting isn't as great, but there's that minimal patina that porcelain pots in constant use for 3 or 4 decades can show...still a grand. Quality(and popularity/desirability) trumps patina every time!
Ryan(unhelpful today!)
http://japanesebonsaipots.net/

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Re: help me out with this old(?) pot

Post  Russell Coker on Fri Jun 29, 2012 12:42 pm

Thanks Ryan. I understand and accept everything you say. Trust me, there are no delusions of grandeur here. I know I'm not sitting on my retirement! It would be nice, but...

Yes, since I found another with the same design it's a production pot. Never doubted that. Just trying to find out when that production was, where, and by whom. And where are the rest of them? This forum has shown us so many bonsai from Taiwan and mainland China, as well as the rest of Asia, I keep expecting to see one turn up somewhere.

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Re: help me out with this old(?) pot

Post  Ryan B on Fri Jun 29, 2012 2:33 pm

It's crazy to think that you probably WILL find out exactly when this pot was made and by whom, isn't it? Just 20 years ago, you would've been stuck! Oh, internets...
Anyway, Russ, I think you're right, it's not like it's some bi-color unglazed pot from a yakuza don....lol.

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Re: help me out with this old(?) pot

Post  cbobgo on Fri Jun 29, 2012 6:50 pm

maybe this is so obvious that you did it and didn't mention it - but have you tried contacting the owner of the website you found the pic on, and see if that person knows anything about the pot?

- bob

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Re: help me out with this old(?) pot

Post  Russell Coker on Fri Jun 29, 2012 8:18 pm


Bob,

I had to go back through old emails to 2006. I did contact them, and they were surprised to see it. Unfortunately they didn't know anything about their pot. They did post it to Chinese and Japanese pot discussion sites and one friend of theirs thought it was old and quite nice, but then changed his mind because I didn't pay enough for it!!!! I tried to explain that I didn't buy it from a pot dealer but more like a junk shop. I never did really get anywhere.

And one thing I forgot to mention is that I saw really expensive antique pots in Japan with no chops. Of course this was in the 80's before the bubble burst. I'd say that the majority of old pots I saw had no chops. It was great when they did, but most didn't. And I couldn't afford them either way!


Last edited by Russell Coker on Thu Jul 05, 2012 11:32 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Re: help me out with this old(?) pot

Post  Emil Brannstrom on Thu Jul 05, 2012 10:39 pm

Heya Russell!

Although not really about bonsai, the site gotheborg.com might be able to help.

Besr Regards
Emil

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Re: help me out with this old(?) pot

Post  nekotoban on Tue Oct 09, 2012 12:19 pm


Hi Russel, I have known you asking about this Chinese pot but sorry, I can not give you a sufficient answer.

Actually I tried to find where this is from and even showed the photos to my husband (because he has hawk eyes) but he couldn't identified.
He said that these two looked similar but to him, the pot clay seemed to be different.
In addition, he also said that without chop/signature, even if you had the pot in front of you, seeing it touching it you could hardly identify
whether these two were from the same kiln.

I only hope some other members in IBC or outsiders will sort this out ...I am also the one who wants to know where this is from.



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Re: help me out with this old(?) pot

Post  Russell Coker on Thu Oct 11, 2012 12:50 pm



Thanks for taking a look.

I know these aren't the only two in existance, so I keep hoping another will another example will turn up somewhere.

Russell

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Re: help me out with this old(?) pot

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