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Collection

An image of Covered box decorated with lychee sprays by
Alternate image of Covered box decorated with lychee sprays by

China

Title
Covered box decorated with lychee sprays
Place of origin
China
Period
Jiajing 1522 - 1566Ming dynasty 1368 - 1644 → China
Year
late 16th century
Media category
Lacquerware
Materials used
carved cinnabar lacquer with black lacquer interior
Dimensions

3.6 x 7.0 cm

Credit
Purchased 1989
Accession number
339.1989
Location
Not on display
Further information

The wooden body of this box has been covered in many layers of red lacquer and the design carved in relief. The technique has been used in China for centuries, while this particular shape derives from ceramic seal-paste containers. This box was purchased in Japan by a private collector, and thus is included here as an example of 'creative adaptation' ('mitate') by Japanese tea practitioners who would have used it as an incense box ('kogo') to contain the slithers of imported fragrant wood used to scent a room.

The Asian Collections, AGNSW, 2003, pg.210.

Bibliography (1)

Jackie Menzies (Editor), The Asian Collections Art Gallery of New South Wales, 'The World of Samurai Culture', Sydney, 2003, 210 (colour illus.).

Exhibition history (1)

Sparse shadows, flying pearls: a Japanese screen revealed, Queensland Art Gallery, South Brisbane, 27 Aug 2005–27 Nov 2005