16. A familiar phoenix

This is another more modern ‘Dragon and Phoenix’ vase, and one where the Houou Bird will be of great interest. Once again, as a modern vase, we are interested in trying to identify the workshop where it was created, and again there are clues.

Personally I like this version of the Houou Bird. It still has the head of a rooster or chicken, but it has style. The dragon by comparison is far less dignified. Interestingly it is not hard to find an Ando marked vase with an identical Houou Bird including all of the surrounding detail within the panel. [We also now have Ando vases on this website]. Does this make this vase an Ando vase? Clearly not, but it does establish a connection.

Looking at the technical work on the Houou Birds on the two panels, something is immediately obvious. Image 16.3 is how the design should be, while image 16.4 has a horrid production error at the eye. Could this then be an Ando vase that was rejected on quality and never got its base stamp? This is only one explanation of course, and there are many others.

Turning to the band around the upper part of the vase, we see more similarities, but this time with the vase in the previous post (object 15). There is a wavy band of wire on a diagonal, separating two different colour grounds. Also within both images there are rather randomly applied small areas of white enamel. Coincidence of design, copying by an imitator, or an indication that these vases were made by the same workshop? Perhaps future objects will bring further evidence.

Object 16. Vase height 18.2 cm weight 222 gm.

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