#KNI-09 A Small Antique Bamboo Woven Basket with Lacquer Decoration and Inlay

This small antique Chinese bamboo woven basket that has been lacquered inside as well as decorated with lacquer on the lid is a fine example of old Chinese bamboo woven ware with a root that goes a long way back to the traditional culture. This bamboo basket is part of Shen's Special Collection in Knitted Bamboo Ware.

Chinese started to use woven bamboo wares, along with woven wares made of tree branches or special grass, since 7000 years ago out of the necessity to store additional food hunted, clothing, and personal properties. Then, it was discovered that a woven basket could hold the water or wet food by smearing some dirt or clay onto it. Eventually, with the more modernization and industrialization, fired pottery without bamboo or wooden frame became widely popular for the sake of convenience. Hence, the production of bamboo and other woven wares declined. However, in some areas in China, this tradition of using woven bamboo and clay to make container or basket is still being practiced, except that the clay had been substituted with thick lacquer material instead. Sometimes other material and technique such as paper mache was also used with lacquer for these containers or baskets. In some other area in China, especially south of Yangtze river, lacquer was more used to strengthen the durability of the bamboo basket and to enhance the look. However, this basket is from the south.

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