Kwon-glazed Porcelain Plate with the Design of Angels, Qianlong Period, Qing Dynasty
This plate illustrates a Greek myth about Paris who needed to choose between Hera, Athena and Aphrodite for whom could own the golden apple. The apple was an indicator of who’s the fairest. Paris finally chose Aphrodite who promised to give him Helen – the most beautiful woman in the world and was a wife of King Menelaus. The King, feeling angry of Paris who robbed his wife, declared the Trojan War.
This artifact shows it’s around the time when foreigners started to order Cantonese enamel wares and asked painters to paint according to their drafts. Western religious stories, myths, legends and customs were the prevailing themes. The Chinese painters obviously tried to imitate the western realistic approach but were not good enough as the figures are not in right proportion and the lighting was not contrast enough.