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Two-Handled Covered Bowl, Meissen, ca. 1725. Photo courtesy Röbbig München

Decorated with polychrome chinoiserie scenes by Johann Gregorius Höroldt. No marks. H. 13.8 cm, W. 16.7 cm. Price on request.

This rare form of covered bowl, also known as an “Olitätentopf” or “olio pot,” was inspired presumably by a Japanese original from the collection of Augustus the Strong. A number of Meissen examples are extant, the earliest being an undecorated piece in white Böttger porcelain with a small lion finial, which is still preserved in the Dresden Porcelain Collection (inv. no. PE 2911 a, b).

In addition to being decorated in the three quatrefoil reserves on the sides, with the polychrome figural chinoiserie scenes by Johann Gregorius Höroldt characteristic of the time, this rare example also displays a striking frieze of iron-red chrysanthemums and peonies at the rim of the cover. In addition, colourful sprays of indianische Blumen are painted between the pictorial reserves while the décor is rounded out with filigree Laub- und Bandelwerk in iron-red and gold and fields of Böttger lustre.

Preserved in the Kunstkammer of Schloss Friedenstein in Gotha is the pair to the present covered bowl (inv. no. P 36 I; for the cartouche, see exh. cat. Leipzig 2010, p. 284, cat. no. R 2 b). The 1767/68 posthumous inventory of the belongings of the passionate porcelain-lover Luise Dorothee von Sachsen-Gotha-Altenburg (1710–1767) records that her collection included several “bouillon cups” (“Bouillon-Tassen”) as well as bowls (“Näpfgen”) with covers and a number of “Japanische Figuren” (information kindly supplied by Ute Däberitz, Gotha).

Literature: Exh. cat. Leipzig 2010
Exotische Welten. Der Schulz-Codex und das frühe Meissener Porzellan. Edited by E. M. Hoyer and Thomas Rudi. Exh. cat. Grassi Museum für Angewandte Kunst Leipzig, March 12 – June 13, 2010. Leipzig, 2010

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