In Chinese art the pottery tomb figure tradition is one of the most dynamic and evocative - such models were made specifically to be placed in the tombs of deceased members of the royalty, the aristocracy, the ruling elite and the military, in order to recreate in the after-life a semblance of the reality of life on earth. From the beginnings in the Qin and Han dynasties, this tradition developed into one of extraordinary dimensions and such pottery figures - of soldiers, courtiers, horses, camels, entertainers, etc. - provide us now with the most colourful and accurate image of life in ancient China. The tradition reached its zenith in the Tang dynasty (618-906CE). This 6th century object depicting a civil official or courtier on a horse enables us to enhance that image of ancient China through her art.
Asian Art Dept., AGNSW, 22 August 2000.
Place where the work was made
550 CE-577 CE
grey earthenware with some paint and gilding
32.5 x 10.5 x 25.0 cm
Signature & date
Not signed. Not dated.
Not on display