Or are you looking for Search the Archives?

Please complete the form to email this item.



  • Place of origin:

    Yixing (made)

  • Date:

    1650-1750 (made)
    early 20th century (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Chen, Mingyuan (maker)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Red stoneware, hand modelled

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    Ceramics, Room 137, The Curtain Foundation Gallery, case 14, shelf 6

Physical description

Model of a basket of nuts and seeds including a chestnut, water chestnut, walnut, water caltrop, dried lychee and peanuts, all realistically modelled in brown, red and buff clays, with touches of darker pigment. On the tiny lotus seed is the square seal 'He cun', which is one of the mark of the potter Chen Mingyuan, active in the Kangxi period.

Place of Origin

Yixing (made)


1650-1750 (made)
early 20th century (made)


Chen, Mingyuan (maker)

Materials and Techniques

Red stoneware, hand modelled

Marks and inscriptions

He cun
Seal mark, alias of Chen Mingyuan


Length: 11.5 cm, Width: 11.0 cm

Object history note

With padded box, with label 'Chen Mingyuan woven cane'.

Historical significance: Chen Mingyuan excelled in making small naturalistic objects for the scholar's desk, and several loose nuts or groups of nuts are known. Nut teapots, using contrasting clays, are also common; but a basket of nuts by Chen has not previously been recorded.

Descriptive line

Model of a group of nuts and seeds in a basket, coloured stoneware clays, mark of Chen Mingyuan, Yixing ware, China, 1650-1750 / early 20th century

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

Kerr, Rose "Yixing Wares in the V&A" in Orientations, Vol. 14, No. 10; October 1983, Fig. 16.
'Documentary Chinese Works of Art in Scholar's Taste', from catalogue for the exhibiton and sale at Sydney L. Moss Ltd., London, 1983, No. 87.





Subjects depicted

Baskets; Seeds; Nuts


Ceramics; Porcelain; Figures & Decorative ceramics


East Asia Collection

Large image request

Please confirm you are using these images within the following terms and conditions, by acknowledging each of the following key points:

Please let us know how you intend to use the images you will be downloading.