A magnificent and massive pair of huanghuali inlaid hat-chests 17th/18th century (2)

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Lot 512W Y
A magnificent and massive pair of huanghuali inlaid hat-chests
17th/18th century
Sold for US$ 596,075 inc. premium

Chinese Works of Art

18 Mar 2019, 10:00 EDT

New York

Lot Details
A magnificent and massive pair of huanghuali inlaid hat-chests 17th/18th century (2) A magnificent and massive pair of huanghuali inlaid hat-chests 17th/18th century (2) A magnificent and massive pair of huanghuali inlaid hat-chests 17th/18th century (2) A magnificent and massive pair of huanghuali inlaid hat-chests 17th/18th century (2)
A magnificent and massive pair of huanghuali inlaid hat-chests
17th/18th century
Of rectangular form, each frame of mortise and tenon construction with massive well-figured doors of a warm, honey tone and set off by a removable central stile, the front panels finely inlaid with shell, hardwood, glass, soapstone and select hardstones creating a composition of elegantly potted archaistic ritual vessels and other objects for the scholar's table, the doors fastened with etched baitong lockplates and hinges.
34 1/2in (87.6cm) high, 62 1/2in (158.8cm) wide, 32 1/2in (2).

Footnotes

  • 十七/十八世紀 黃花梨嵌寶博古圖頂箱一對

    Provenance:
    An American Northwest private collection
    An American Southern California private collection

    See a pair of compound cabinets in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, dating from the late 16th to early 17th century, with hat-chests of a closely related size and strikingly similar inlay technique featuring floral motifs.

    The use of inlay on furniture in China dates to the Han dynasty, applying semi-precious materials set in wood or lacquer to enhance the object's appearance. By the Ming dynasty the technique was recorded in the Xiushi Lu where varied materials such as coral, amber, agate, ivory and horn were fashioned into intricate compositions of abstract patterns, figural scenes or floral designs. The late Ming artisan Zhou Zhu excelled at this technique, mainly on small table top items, and thereafter the method became known as Zhouzhi (literally Made by Zhou).

    The present cabinets illustrate the Zhouzhi style in the transitional Late Ming/early Qing dynasties. With flowering branches arising from archaic-form vessels and objects, the inlay pattern shows an embrace of the guya (classic beauty and elegant taste) aesthetic trend, that touched numerous aspects of Chinese decorative arts during this period.

    For an essay on the Zhouzhi inlay see Curtis Evarts, "The Zhouzhi tradition, Inlaid Hardwood Furnishings of the Late Ming and Qing Dynasties" in Liang Yi Collection, Hong Kong, 2007, vol. 3 pp. 62-77.
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