Author Topic: 2016 Classical Gardens Ge Yuan exact same design copied on other artworks  (Read 5075 times)

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Offline badon

Something interesting from the QQ group. It's the same design as on the 2016 Classical Gardens Ge Yuan. It's a painted ceramic dish.
 

Offline badon

I found more info from the QQ group about this painted plates with the same design as the Ge Yuan coin. With these photos, this was said:

"如果这是一张照片,无大碍,大不了,原地取景再照一张,就是自己的了。这应该是张松茂先生的工艺磁盘原创画作。就涉及到一些问题了。"

As best I can tell, it is saying Zhang Songmao is the artist that designed the plates, but I'm unclear about whether he copied the Classical Gardens Ge Yuan coin design, or the coin copied the plates. I used this tool to translate:

http://imtranslator.net/compare/chinese-simplified/to-english/translation/

More info about the artist:

https://www.google.com/search?q=Zhang+Songmao

This phrase seems more informative:

"我已搜了几百张照片了,无一大体一致的景物照片。此图是张松茂先生的原创画作是可能极大的事情。"

I think it says:

"I have found hundreds of photos without a broadly consistent picture of the scene. This design is Mr. Zhang Songmao's original paintings of great things that are possible."

Who is the artist of the Ge Yuan coins? Is it Zhang Songmao? Is there a controversy brewing over who the real artist was for the Ge Yuan design?

More info:

"版权肯定会有的,但是一是淘宝抄袭满天飞,二是上币用的应该是有授权,三是如果出现问题只能追究上币也与我们无关,四是无论如何以后我们都会严谨了在严谨坚持推行原创"

Which I'm guessing means:

"Firstly, copyright credit should be given, but on Taobao plagiarism is everywhere. Secondly, if the coin design is used it should be authorized. Thirdly, if the problem can only be held on the coin it has nothing to do with us. Fourthly, in any case in the future we will be rigorous and strict with insistence on pursuing the original artwork."

Interesting! Maybe someone else can give better translations?

fwang2450 gave this link for the painted plates, which I screenshotted:

http://www.taocang365.com/shop/html/?599.html

He then said this "上币的个园张冠李戴了" which means something about "mistaken identity".
 

Offline badon

I was having trouble attaching a large screenshot image, so here's the Mozilla Archive Format of the website fwang2450 linked to.
« Last Edit: 2016 Feb 25, 02:18:11 AM by badon »
 

Offline badon

Here's the images "hidden" in 7zip archive. I suspect the forum software is choking on the extra long dimensions of the  screenshot, so this should work.
 

Offline badon

I did some more research and it appears the original artist for this design is actually the porcelain plate painter Zhang Songmao. The painting was made in 1988 or 1989, and I found several sales on ebay. This one, 401032898177, sold for only $5.25 and it contains detailed information:

Quote
Bradford Exchange Collectors Plate Bradex: 10-I50-2.5 - # 5 - Gardens of Harmonious Pleasure from the series Scenes from the Summer Palace by Zhang Song Mao - Imperial Cheng Te Chen in original double box with COA.

The plate measures 8½" in diameter and is double boxed.  It has the Certificate of Authenticity and a brochure regarding the artist/subject.

Outer box is date stamped Sep. 22, 1989.

The company that originally manufactured or distributed the plate was this one:

http://www.bradfordexchange.com/

You can search for the "Bradex number" on the internet to find lots more references:

https://www.google.com/search?q=10-I50-2.5

This site is particularly rich with some basic facts:

http://www.hawkeyeplates.com/imperial-ching-te-chen.html

It says each plate design was in production for 175 days, with 8 plates in the whole set. The set is called "Scenes from the Summer Palace", and they were in production from 1988 to 1990, when the last plate was produced. The information is formatted with the production run duration (175 days for all of them), the Bradex number, the year the plate was produced (88 for 1988 etc), the plate's title, and finally the price if you want to buy them:

175 days 10-I50-2.1 88 Marble Boat $48
175 days 10-I50-2.2 88 Jade Belt Bridge $48
175 days 10-I50-2.3 89 Hall that Dispels the Clouds $45
175 days 10-I50-2.4 89 Long Promenade, The $55
175 days 10-I50-2.5 89 Garden of Harmonious Pleasure $55
175 days 10-I50-2.6 89 Great Stage, The $48
175 days 10-I50-2.7 89 Seventeen Arch Bridge $55
175 days 10-I50-2.8 90 Boaters on Kumming Lake $55

This site has photos of each plate in the set, and much higher prices:

http://www.theplatelady.com/oriental.htm

There are several items on ebay right now, but it took me a while to formulate some sophisticated searches that can find them all:

* Search ebay for Zhang Songmao's Summer Palace plates.
* Search ebay for Zhang Songmao's Summer Palace plates recently sold.

As you can see from the list of sold items (20 at the moment), you can safely ignore the high prices because these sell dirt cheap for as little as $5 each if you're patient. However, I suspect the badon effect might take hold for these plates and this particular artist, and if art pricing happens for Chinese coin, this artist's work might become a lot more valuable. This was "cheap Chinese junk" in the 1980's and 1990's, but now Zhang Songmao's work is on the government of China's official coins! If his work was plagiarized, it's possible he doesn't even know how famous he is!

You can bet that if the artist doesn't know how famous he is, the collectors of his art probably don't know either. If you're interested in betting on art pricing for China's coinage, it might be smart to grab a set of these plates to go with your Classical Gardens coin collection. This is a very fascinating development! It's interesting stories like this that make collectors love the coins they collect.
 

Offline AbeLinkin

This is fascinating. Great work on compiling all the information like you have. It will be interesting to see how this information is received by the community. I imagine we will see a lot of varying opinions unfold on the matter over the next few weeks. I know my first reaction was to buy one of those plates... so that's exactly what I did. Ha!: 151985151468

Edit by badon: Linkify.
« Last Edit: 2016 Feb 25, 04:18:08 AM by badon »
 

Offline badon

I just found a book on Amazon.com that is all about the artist, so maybe he's already pretty famous in China?: Zhang Songmao Porcelain Paintings(Chinese Edition). The book is by "SHAO JI MEI ZHU BIAN", and the Amazon listing claims it was published in 2007. If people care about Zhang Songmao's porcelain paintings enough to write books about them 20 years later, then I think we're on the right track for choosing artists that might be worth learning about, and maybe investing in their artwork. How do we buy his ORIGINAL porcelain paintings, instead of the mass-produced plates?

I have attached a photo of Zhang Songmao from the screenshotted site in my previous posts. You can see that he's hand-painting ordinary ceramic tiles of the kind that you might find on a kitchen counter top or in a bathroom. I have had hand-painted tiles produced for use in my home before, and although it's expensive, it's not too crazy expensive. For an artist that wants to make money as an artist, it's a great way to get plenty of work if the price is right.

Although most artists doing this kind of grunt work may never be worth more than a basic hourly wage for the art they produce, sometimes you get an artist like Zhang Songmao that becomes famous, and suddenly that kitchen counter top that you prepare your sandwiches on is worth a fortune. I would want to talk to an expert about this before I would do anything drastic, but I suspect there might be good profits in tracking down the homes that have Zhang Songmao's painted tiles in them, and carefully removing them so they can be remounted on a suitable portable surface (that looks like a picture frame), and ostentatiously displaying them and protecting them from wear-and-tear damage.

I've never tried to remove ceramic tiles that way, so maybe it's not possible to remove them without damaging them. In that case, they might be better left where they are. What would you do if someone knocked on your door and asked to buy your bathroom? Not your house, because they only want your bathroom! Haha!
 

Offline badon

This is fascinating. Great work on compiling all the information like you have. It will be interesting to see how this information is received by the community. I imagine we will see a lot of varying opinions unfold on the matter over the next few weeks. I know my first reaction was to buy one of those plates... so that's exactly what I did. Ha!: 151985151468

Oh man, you beat me to it! That plate didn't come up in my searches, or I might have grabbed it myself! I found another one that's about twice the price: 331484295807. Should I buy it? I don't even collect the Classical Gardens..but what if this particular plate soars in value now that it has an important place in China's art and numismatic history?

I think someone must have noticed me researching this topic because the Ge Yuan coins have started to disappear from ebay today: 151994116311, 161934780422. Those are kind of expensive ones too, from dragonzeng168. They have sold well, but still somewhat slowly due to their high price. There hasn't been 2 sales in one day since December 2015!

And, ggoodluck2013 has added them to his inventory too, which is really unusual because he specializes in being way ahead of the market in identifying important older rarities that are unknown to the market. Hmm...He does have a reputation for being 1 step ahead of everyone... I'll admit one reason I decided to research these Ge Yuan coins a bit further was because I saw his new listing for the Ge Yuan coins: 131735761495. I figured there had to be something special about them that has been overlooked so far...and I guess I figured out what it is! VERY EXCITING!
 

Offline AbeLinkin



I've never tried to remove ceramic tiles that way, so maybe it's not possible to remove them without damaging them.

Neither have I, but I imagine if they were really valuable as a piece of art, cutting out the whole floor or surface they are stuck too and then framing it that way might be the best viable solution. You can always fix a floor, countertop, or backsplash, but risking braking just one tile out of a tapestry of tiles by trying to remove them individually could be disastrous if they are truly considered works of art and extremely valuable.
 

Offline badon

Some better searches:

* Search ebay for Ge Yuan Garden of Harmonious Pleasures
* Search ebay for Ge Yuan sold items

There are still some cheap plates on ebay! What to do...what to do...
 

Offline AbeLinkin

Oh man, you beat me to it! That plate didn't come up in my searches, or I might have grabbed it myself! I found another one that's about twice the price: 331484295807. Should I buy it? I don't even collect the Classical Gardens..but what if this particular plate soars in value now that it has an important place in China's art and numismatic history?

Yeah. after I read your post I visited the Plate Ladies website and just copied and pasted the name of the plate into eBay's search field and to my surprise a few turned up in the search result. The first two were the more expensive one's and I would have bought one of those until I noticed the cheaper one. So then it was a no brainer. As far as buying the other one goes, had this cheaper one not been there I would have gladly bought that one. So I'd say go for it.

I look at it this way - The story is great with room to evolve even further and I can imagine having both the coin and the plate on display and the story behind it all to back it up. That's a lot of great dimension! I look forward to the first person who has both the coin and the plate in pictures posted to one of the forums. That will really stir things up. Everyone will want a matching plate for their coin after that. It's too good to pass up in my opinion.
 

Offline AbeLinkin

Here you go. I've found another one a little cheaper: 161865164156

Edit by badon: Linkify.
« Last Edit: 2016 Feb 25, 05:44:39 AM by badon »
 

Offline AbeLinkin

Here you go. I've found another one a little cheaper: 161865164156

And... they're sold.

Well that was fun! I'm guessing you decided to go through with it, or I hope you did. Otherwise someone else is playing along in this little adventure behind the scenes.

I decided to pick up one of thincat00's silver PF70's while I was at it too. Hope it gets here in time. I want to be that first person posting pictures of that plate and coin together, but deservedly so it should be you badon. Or at the very least the first time it happens it happens here on this forum and by one of us. lol!

Edit by badon: Linkify.
« Last Edit: 2016 Feb 25, 05:44:54 AM by badon »
 

Offline badon

It wasn't me that grabbed it. I took a break from coins to get some grub. There are spies among us, watching everything!
 

Offline AbeLinkin

Wow... very interesting. It appears the badon effect is in full swing.
 

Offline badon

It might have been members of the Classical Gardens QQ group in China that grabbed it. I pasted a link to this topic there, and they're all awake and doing their evening hobby time (it was about 9 PM in Hong Kong). Meanwhile, people in the West were still sleeping or just beginning their work day. I just talked to dragonzeng168, and he said the ebay price was good on the plates. I didn't compare prices myself (convert RMB to USD), but if some of those ebay listings are cheaper than China prices, it would make sense for the buyers in China to grab them.
 

Offline AbeLinkin

Here's another in a seemingly nice frame. No certificate or box, but offer option is available: 272142019960

Here's the plate in a set of 4 plates at a pretty good price, again no certificates or box, but it too has Make An Offer option:  252294900152

Edit by badon: Linkify.

« Last Edit: 2016 Feb 25, 06:56:09 AM by badon »
 

Offline badon

It's kind of interesting the Classical Gardens QQ group demoted the Lan Ting garden to second place after the Ge Yuan was minted. The Lan Ting was considered the best design in the whole series, until the Ge Yuan took the #1 spot away. I wonder how much was known about that from the beginning? Was it a surprise to discover it was taken from an older artwork? So many questions.
 

Offline trouble

It wasn't me that grabbed it. I took a break from coins to get some grub. There are spies among us, watching everything!

This non-fiat coin is best of the Classical garden even it has copyright issue. no one care in china.

Edit by badon: medal = non-fiat coin.
« Last Edit: 2016 Feb 29, 06:59:05 PM by badon »
 

Offline badon

I agree, it is very beautiful, and I can see why the mint would rip off the design. We should make a list of known design rip-offs. Here's the ones I can think of at the moment:

* 1995 1 oz silver panda proof from Taiwan's 1994 1 oz silver panda proof.
* 2014 Macau expo from 2015 3rd panda expo (3rd panda expo was designed first, but not minted until 2015).
* 2016 Classical Gardens Ge Yuan from 1988 collector plate painting by Zhang Songmao.

Any others?
 

Offline badon

 

Offline AbeLinkin

Well, my plate has arrived and I have to say it really is quite nice. As soon as my coins arrive I will be sure to post some pictures.

It looks like some more listings of the Garden of Harmonious Pleasures plates have surfaced with box and COA's, but no longer at the cheaper prices. Funny that both new listings are out of Washington State.

111921411864

272152334401

Edit by badon: Linkify.
« Last Edit: 2016 Mar 01, 03:41:06 PM by badon »
 

Offline badon

The collectors of artistic plates can be pretty fanatical. They would go nuts for these if they knew what we know. I'm not sure what would happen then, but it's entirely possible the plates themselves could be good investments, along with the coins.
 

Offline AbeLinkin

I think so. At the very least the Garden of Harmonious Pleasures plate has excellent potential given the recent information that's come to light regarding the Ge Yuan coin having copied it's design (blatantly I might add) and the copied design taking first place in the Chinese Gardens series.

The plate is so cheap in comparison to the coin why wouldn't you want a matching plate for it simply to tell the story? That's value enough alone for me. The potential that the plate itself could go up in value is just an added bonus as far as I'm concerned. But it's also scenarios like these that I look for when trying to determine if something could potentially go up in value and based on that I would say the likelihood is very good.
 

Offline badon

I agree completely. Although popularity can be taken for granted when an entire market becomes popular - leaving only rarity as the dominant coin investing fundamental - some coins can become even more popular, and there's no limit to how high prices can go when a single coin stands out from all the rest. There are lots of things that can make a coin unusually popular, but one of the most reliable ones is simply having an interesting history. The more suspense and surprise plot twists in the story, the more it inspires the imaginations of collectors who want to become a part of the story by owning a piece of it.

We have a lot more research to do on this topic. Who is Zhang Songmao? Is he still alive? Is he still producing artwork? Are there original artworks by him out in the world somewhere? What is his story? Does he have any interesting suspense and surprise plot twists in his life or career?

You know what? I think somebody needs to contact the company and ask for more information about Zhang Songmao. Do we want them to know what we know? Might be a good idea to keep this quiet for a while, haha. Although China doesn't care about plagiarism, the USA does, and they might go so far as to block import of the Classical Gardens series (or all Chinese coins!) if the company complains about the plagiarism. I actually think this will be good for the Bradford Exchange's business, but they might feel legally compelled to defend their copyrights (use it or lose it is how it works in the USA). And, artists tend to be homicidally offended when other artists rip off their work, although maybe in a while, it will improve the prestige of Zhang Songmao.

When I have a spare moment, I will contact the company to ask for more information. The people at LBC are talking about how some coins are never being offered in the West: Re: MCC LIST #183: 2014, collectors, pullback 9 reasons, food, coin-medal-whatever. This might end up being yet another coin that Westerners will be unable to buy.