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'Bleu de Hue' bowl with landscape painting and poem, 18th century-19th centuryQing dynasty (1644–1911), Export ware for Viet Nam, mark "Longevity", porcelain with underglaze blue decoration and a metal band around the rim, 3.7 x 11.5 cm. Gift of Max and Cynthia Loveday 2011, 128.2011. Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney (C) Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney

The poem on this bowl refers to an aspect of Chinese philosophy which maintains that if one understands the meaning of something, the vehicle that led to this understanding is unimportant (eg if you truly understand music then the sound itself becomes irrelevant). This piece resembles the ‘bleu de Hue’ wares exported to Viet Nam. The French term 'bleu de Hue' (literally, 'the blue of Hue') refers to the blue and white porcelain commissioned for the Vietnamese court in Hue during the Nguyen dynasty (1802–1945). The porcelain was produced at the kilns of Jingdezhen in Jiangxi province.

Asian Art Department, AGNSW, September 2011