The areas around the city of Canton in China produced a blue and white china which was hand decorated and made primarily for export to the west. Whole families in Canton were dedicated to decorating the china which was manufactured from the 17th through the 19th Centuries. Canton export porcelain featured a highly recognizable motif of scenes that were very characteristic of Chinese life and surroundings. Many of the artists were extremely skillful in their hand painting of the scenes and the borders surrounding the pieces.
Yellow Garage dealer Hewling’s House Antiques presents a Chinese export porcelain master salt. Master salts were used in combination with the small individual salts at each place setting. Since there were only one or two master salts on the table, there were fewer made and are therefore a rarer form of salt. This salt has been decorated with a vivid scene and bright borders in a deep shade of blue. The dark cobalt blue creates a vibrant contrast in color between the painting and the white background.
This export ware master salt exhibits age and use appropriate wear and darkening on the unglazed areas. Although difficult to accurately date, the lack of a mark indicates that this salt was made before 1891 which is when the McKinley Tariff Act was enacted which required that imported items be marked with the country of origin. The salt measures 4” X 3 1\4” and is 1 1\4” high. Chinese export porcelain collectors who cherish the unique decoration and hand painted artistry of these beautiful ceramic masterpieces, will value the addition of this master salt to their collection.
19th Century Chinese Export Porcelain Master Salt