Blue/White Underglaze? Lamp (Vase) Chinese? New? Old? (Post #1)

Started by Carol L., Mar 19, 2019, 08:49:51

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Carol L.

Hi. I purchased this charming 8" high lamp (vase) that has unusual designs, and I'm wondering if anyone knows something about this.  Maybe it's not Chinese.  Maybe old or maybe not.  Not in perfect condition, for sure.

It is entertaining to look at.  My western eyes see:  a whale, a boat, a fish, a couple of churches (pagodas?), a spaceship or two, and some trees!  Surely these symbols have other names, but it's fun.

The body of the vase has ridges from top to bottom -- the ridges are quite noticeable when the lamp is on and the light shines down onto it.  (In other words, the vase isn't completely smooth to the touch, moving from top to bottom.)  Also, my outdoor photos don't seem to capture its blueish background on the unpainted areas.

My plan is to submit a photo or two in more than one post which will hopefully help in identifying this little lamp (vase).

Thank you so much.

Carol L.


Hi Carol,
While some features are of Chinese origin, the painting style is nothing traditional. Let us see what Stan says. The "pagodas" are not of the Chinese type; especially the needles on top of the roofs are typical for Japan, but not sure if this is Japanese either.


I agree with Rec, this looks faience.
Not Chinese but European production imitating Chinese or Oriental style, the so-called Chinoiserie, I think.

Carol L.

Thank you, all.  These are good explanations for what I would call "strange" drawings.  Now I feel better knowing I won't be making fun of something deserving more respect.  It certainly has been worth more than the $5 I paid for it, in "entertainment" value alone, and the bonus is being able to use it as a lamp.  Happy day!


Yes, I agree to with Rex I have never seen such a foot on Japanese wares.