Early Qing dynasty Naturalistically carved in the form of a gnarled tree bark with both curved ends and barbed sides, the arched scholar object intricately carved on the surface with a reticulated design of a bat feasting on the fruits of longevity, all issuing from leafy branches. 15.6cm long.
Provenance 來源: Private Japanese collection
Ink rests are commonly found in scholars' studios, favoured by those who have attained the highest levels of literati taste. Appearing towards the late Ming dynasty, the bamboo carving industry flourished and matured under a stable and prosperous society. A more advanced and disciplined technique of bamboo carving developed by elite scholarly bamboo carvers prevailed at this period, which boast superior quality and excellent craftsmanship. By utilising the Jiading school 'deep-cut' technique, bamboo carvers of this new era were able to manipulate and work the best bamboo roots into masterpieces of various naturalistic shapes and textures. The current inkrest epitomises this ideal, and unlike its functional prototypes, is more of an object for scholarly contemplation.
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