The TT Tsui collection of Chinese ceramics
Sui Dynasty 581–618
This fine example of a saddled horse has an all-over yellow/cream glaze and has been overpainted using red and green (only small traces remain) to accentuate the saddle and blankets.
The creamy glaze, which is often a feature of Sui ceramics, is a clue for dating as is the mane which is moulded as a vertical straight-edged shape with a flat top.
The horse's tail is also characteristically Sui, though this type is sometimes found in early Tang sculpture. It is typically quite flat and forms an 's' shape from the rump.
The horse stands with its feet firmly anchored on the ground, its head is down and mouth open and its realism is enhanced by the careful painting of the eyes.
While this horse has wonderful character, it should be remembered that this would have been one of many produced in pieces from the same moulds.