OBJECTS FOR THE SCHOLAR'S DESK, Hong Kong 2018
By Appointment Only *Please click on contact for further information

Playthings

AN IMPERIAL BAMBOO ROOT DOUBLE GOURD BOX AND COVER

QING DYNASTY, 18TH CENTURY

LENGTH: 11.1CM

The box is carved in the round from bamboo root in the form of a double gourd and decorated on the surface with attendant double gourds issuing from the same leafy branch. The vines clambering along the surface of the principal double gourd form a stylised shou (longevity) character, which alludes to the rebus Fu lu shou sanxing 福祿壽三星 (The Gods of the ‘Three Stars’ who represent the qualities of Wealth 福, Status 祿 and Longevity 壽). The box is carved in deep undercut relief and rests on a hongmu openwork stand carved with a matching double gourd motif. The bamboo root is patinated to a warm brown tone.

SIMILAR EXAMPLES
A similar bamboo double gourd box and cover, catalogued as an album container, is published in the Palace Museum’s book The Imperial Packing Art of the Qing Dynasty, 1999, pp. 128-129, Catalogue No. 45.

Bluett & Sons Ltd. 1974 publication Chinese Decorative Arts, London, p. 41 Catalogue No. 92

清十八世紀  竹根雕葫蘆形蓋盒
 帶“壽”字,為「褔、祿、壽」三星