Image rights: During the Ming and Qing dynasties, production of imperial wares was strictly under the control of the government. By sending paper drafts with detailed shapes and patterns for potters to copy, the emperors secured wares from the official kilns in Jingdezhen that exactly met their expectations. This pair of famille-rose bowls is a good example. The draft of their design is in the collection of the Palace Museum, Beijing. As recorded in imperial documents, porcelain wares decorated with magpies and prunus on a yellow-glaze ground were produced in huge numbers for the wedding of the Tongzhi emperor. The marks were written in red, as shown on this pair of bowls.
Manufacturer: Jingdezhen ware, Jiangxi province