Description & Technical information

European market

Price:  £65,000

A fine pair of Chinese export porcelain figural candlesticks modelled as maidens in red coats holding sconces, each brightly enamelled and standing on lotus leaves.

Pairs of court ladies in the form of candlesticks like this are well known but this pair are particularly fine having very expressive and well moulded faces, as well as such bright decoration to the robes and standing on lotus leaves. Pairs of court ladies such as these were used as table decorations in the eighteenth century.

References: Michael Cohen and William Motley, Mandarin and Menagerie, Chinese and Japanese Export Ceramic Figures, Reigate 2008, p. 103, no. 5.4, another pair of this type on lotus leaves from the James E Sowell Collection. 

Other lady candlestick figures: Howard & Ayers 1978, p615 No 644 - a single example with different decoration;  p614, No 643, another pair which it is suggested are derived from a chinoiserie original; Howard 1994, p258 No 307, another pair; No 308, another pair; Williamson 1970, plate LIX, various single examples of the type; Sharpe 2002, p209, a pair of ladies with lotus candleholders also derived from chinoiserie models but with unusual feather shoulder mantles possibly of South American influence; Cohen & Cohen 2001, p44, a pair; 2004, cat 26, a pair, 2007,  cat 16, a large pair. 

Date:  circa 1750
Period:  Qianlong period
Origin:  Chinese
Medium: porcelain
Dimensions: 42.6 cm (16³/₄ inches)