Chinese for the Scottish market
Diam. 15 1/4 in. (38.7 cm)
Helena Woolworth McCann Collection, Purchase, Winfield Foundation Gift, 1962 (62.187.1)
This beautifully drawn flower basket derives from an untraced engraving after Jean-Baptiste Monnoyer (16361699)one of his many variant compositions that were freely adapted to a wide range of media long after his death. The dish is one of two in the Metropolitan, and a third is in the Peabody Essex Museum, Salem, Massachusetts; originally there was probably a set of four or, at most, six. The placement of the basket on a gold ground may have originated with the Chinese painter but, alternatively, could have been inspired by Western familiarity with Yongzheng export porcelains richly patterned in gold, silver, and black.
Little is known of the French family of Berwickshire whose arms appear on the reserve of this dish. The same armorial appears on the reverse of two plates in the British Museum, London.