B&W Charger from Andrew 24/3/2011 ans. by peter

by Frederick James
(Kent U.K.)

A very good site on the whole. We find it a little puzzling as to the definition of the Word"Modern"In your answer to Andrew you do not define the source of the charger which we know is not easy from a snap.In My group we have 3 of these chargers & do agree with your opinion,on the other hand we think the word Modern does cause a confusion as to what period you are suggesting.
We all feel that that word can include all from the mid 19th.cty. please give us a guide as to a definition.
Regards, Frederick James

Comments for B&W Charger from Andrew 24/3/2011 ans. by peter

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definition of "modern"
by: peter

The way I use "modern" is different from how the west is using it, as example in "modern art", "post modern", etc.
You are quite right that there it includes 19th century styles.

My use depends somewhat on Chinese language expressions which are difficult to translate or express with a simple word, but would have the meaning of a more "recent" time. For me "modern" in this case includes the period from the present to perhaps the period of the last 30 or 40 years ago (post 'cultural revolution' period, after opening up) at the most.

Porcelain decorations never changed abruptly from dynasty to dynasty or reign to reign. The styles started tapering off over a long time, while new ones started appearing, slowly replacing them. We can see how the traditional styles and decorations continued since the republic was established in 1911, changing bit by bit. There were some drastic changes after the communists took over, that is from the fifties. For your information, a lot of furniture, for example, was still made completely by hand until about that time. Some look almost the same as those of more than a hundred years ago. So changes took place much slower and later than in Japan or the west.

China wasn't open until after the cultural revolution. In the following decades since then the porcelain industry started copying western and Japanese motifs also, but more for exporting than domestic use, it appears. Even now some Chinese show little acceptance for western or Japanese styles.

That is why I meant that if it were Chinese, it would have to be "modern"; that is more recently made, exclusively for export (selling to foreigners).
Looking at the picture in that post now, after roaming the Japanese internet for a year or so, I am even more convinced that it is Japanese, however. But, if it is Japanese, its age is a different matter. It could probably be much older. It is impossible to compare the age of Japanese and Chinese items.

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