CHINESE EGGSHELL PORCELAIN

By: John Hogan

Chinese Eggshell Porcelain has been produced for centuries and was only produced for the affluent or wealthy strictly for display purposes.

CHINESE EGGSHELL PORCELAIN TEA CUP

CHINESE EGGSHELL TEA CUP

CHINESE EGGSHELL PORCELAIN VASE

CHINESE EGGSHELL VASE

Because of the paper thinness of Eggshell Porcelain, it was referred to as the bodiless ware. It is so paper thin that any sudden amount of impact or extreme fluctuation of temperature (hot or cold) could shatter it. This is one reason why this porcelain is not cheap to produce and the other is that it is painstakingly hand painted with great precision to the point that some of the painters went blind over the years from doing such fine detailed work on a repeated basis. Such incidence was also the case with many of the early English Royal Crown Derby painters who also were renowned for detailed porcelain painting.

The production of modern eggshell porcelain began approximately 1915 during the Hongxian Period (1915-1916). During 1920-1930 eggshell porcelain became an important part of production in Jingdezhen. This eggshell porcelain took a hit when during WW II the Japanese conquered Jingdezhen in 1937 after a surprise attack on Shanghai in 1932, the most integral export harbor city in China.

Such beautiful examples are not in great abundance or sold in regular department stores of today. Exquisite creations of yesteryear are to be lovingly cared for and treasured in private collections.


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