This exceptionally large and fine Chinese export silver presentation bowl weights almost 1.5 kilograms. It is of flattened spherical form, and sits on a low, flared foot that has cut detail. It has an unusual reinforced, scalloped rim with 25 crenulations.
The sides are decorated with superbly-rendered applied sprays of chrysanthemum blooms, irises, plum blossoms and what is likely to be the flower of the sala tree (Buddha’s flower), as well as egrets, humming birds and other birds against a polished rather than a tooled background.
The maker of this magnificent bowl is Luen Wo of Shanghai. The maker’s marks are to the base – ‘Luen Wo’, ‘Shanghai’ and a Chinese ideogram.
The bowl is so unusually large and of unusual form that it is likely to have been a one-off commissioned piece.
It is in excellent condition, and a highly impressive example of Chinese export silver.
Chan, D.P.L., Chinese Export Silver: The Chan Collection, published in conjunction with the Asian Civilisations Museum, Singapore, 2005.
Forbes, H.A.C. et al, Chinese Export Silver 1785-1885, Museum of the American China Trade, 1975.
Marlowe, A.J., Chinese Export Silver, John Sparks, 1990.