Enfilade

Exhibition | Chinese Lacquer: Treasures from the Irving Collection

Posted in exhibitions by Editor on November 12, 2015

清乾隆 剔彩玉玦形漆盒 /  Box in the Shape of an Archaic Jade Jue, Qianlong period (1736–95), carved red and green lacquer; 3.2 x 9.2 x 13 cm (New York: Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2015.500.1.9a, b).

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Now on view at The Met:

Chinese Lacquer: Treasures from the Irving Collection, 12th–18th Century
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 15 August 2015 — 19 June 2016

Lacquer, the resin of a family of trees found throughout southern China—as well as in Southeast Asia, Korea, and Japan—is an amazing material. When exposed to oxygen and humidity, lacquer hardens or polymerizes, becoming a natural plastic and an ideal protective covering for screens, trays, and other implements. Mixed with pigments, particularly cinnabar (red) and carbon (black), lacquer has been also used as an artistic media for millennia.

This installation, which features all of the most important examples of Chinese lacquer in the Museum’s collection, explores the laborious techniques used to create scenes based on history and literature, images of popular gods and mythical and real animals, and representations of landscapes and flowers and birds.

Exhibition | Chinese Textiles: Ten Centuries of Masterpieces

Posted in exhibitions by Editor on November 12, 2015

DP241377

清中期 納紗繡戯服男帔 / Theatrical Robe for a Male Role, second half of the 18th century, silk florentine stitch embroidery on silk gauze, 140.7 x 226.7 cm (New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 32.30.10).

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Now on view at The Met:

Chinese Textiles: Ten Centuries of Masterpieces from the Met Collection
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, London, 15 August 2015 — 19 June 2016

This installation, which explores the cultural importance of silk in China, showcases the most important and unusual textiles from the Museum’s collection. In addition to three rare pieces dating from the Tang dynasty (618–906), when China served as a cultural hub linking Korea and Japan to Central and West Asia, and ultimately to the Mediterranean world, the exhibition also includes eleventh- and twelfth-century tapestries from Central Asia, as well as contemporaneous Chinese examples of this technique.

Spectacular embroideries—including an imperial fourteenth-century canopy decorated with phoenixes and flowers, and a monumental late seventeenth- or early eighteenth-century panel showing phoenixes in a garden—are also on view, together with theatrical garments, court costumes, and early examples of badges worn at court to designate rank.

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