A rare Qing Dynasty Chinese porcelain Buddhist stupa, superbly modeled and enameled with multi-toned flowers and scrolling leaves, a chain of Buddhist lion masks and gold gilt accented jeweled motif on a pink ground. The long, graduated 13-tiered conical spire, symbolic of the of the 13 stages of enlightenment, is decorated with thin floral bands. The Buddhist umbrella is topped with a blue and white glazed canopy on which sits a green treasure vase with red ribbons. All of this sits on top of a multi-tiered square base decorated with more flowers and separated by lotus/flame bands in brightly colored enamel on a turquoise green ground. It is important to note that each section of this stupa was modeled separately before being skillfully attached together with organic cement. Also of importance is the ingeniously weight-bearing construction and careful glazing that can be seen on the underside of the base.
A comparable stupa can be found in the Palace Museum, Beijing.
The stupa is a symbolic grave or shrine where holy relics are kept. It also symbolizes the Universe and is essentially a three-dimensional mandala representing past, present and Nirvana.
Age: Qing Dynasty (19th century)
Dimensions: 17 1/2″ high x 7 3/4″ wide x 7 5/8″ deep