• #15305 A Pair of Rare and Exceptional Large Size 17th Century Lacquered Gilt-Painted Cabinets

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    (一對明代朱漆地金彩繪畫平面大櫃)Photos shown are a pair of exceptional 17th century Chinese lacquered cabinets with wider depth in thick red lacquer back ground with elaborate painting in gold. The paintings on the two cabinets depict full scenery of various activities of a court life with many figures. The gold material that is used for the paintings was first hammered into very thin sheets (薄金, 金箔), cut down or broken down in various smaller sizes (片金), then adhered to the red lacquer substance underneath the gold before the lacquer was totally dried out, then, further taken down and reduced with tools such as small sharpened knife or a bamboo stick, and twisted stuffed cloth as well, to bring the shapes of the objects to the desired degree. Such technique is called Qiang-Jin(熗金) (See Mr. Wang-Shi-Xiang's 髹饰彔解说, an interpretation and explanation of the Ming Dynasty‘s 髹饰彔 written by Huang-Cheng (黄成),the only written and recorded literature about the detail of the Chinese lacquer working and its style and design). 髹飾彔 is beautifully written in classical Chinese language. For those of you who read in Chinese and enjoy classical literature, it is more than a “working” literature to enjoy for its poetic way of using Chinese language. Mr. Wang-Shi-Xiang's interpretation and explanation is wonderful and certainly makes it much easier to understand the original. As for the English version, hopefully there is one or will have one soon. Back to the cabinets, one can see in some of the detailed photos, there are marks of gold being eliminated other than its wear. However, part of the painting was also painted or drawn with both gold threads (線金)as well as powdered gold (泥金). Though these cabinets are in fairly good condition, considering they have lasted for several hundred years (and still stay as a pair), because of the age and wear on the lacquer surface, it is hard to tell if the objects or composition, of the painting, or part of it, were first created by carving into the thick lacquer and filled with more lacquer before the gold was applied to as some of the objects where the gold is worn feel a bit higher than the red lacquer surface if one traces the surface of the cabinets with a finger. But it is possible that that is merely an effect or illusion from the way the gold is adhered to and the way the surfaces were worn. Partially also because these cabinets might have been refinished with more clear lacquer coating before they were exported. That makes it even harder to tell. Also, worth noting, part of the paintings on these cabinets were also created with both gold and black outlines around some of the objects or figures, especially at the bottom front of the cabinets underneath the doors. This seems to be a common feature on some of the painted old Chinese lacquer cabinets. Nevertheless, whatever combined techniques used in painting this pair of cabinets, one can only imagine how elaborate and lavish the colors might have been when these cabinets were first created before the gold was lost or worn! These exceptional cabinets still retain their original large size white brass fittings and circular plates, with a cut-out design of a Buddhist's “Wan, 萬”symbol on the door pulls. While Chinese lacquered objects with gold painting can be traced back to over 2000 years ago, there are very few old examples of lacquered Chinese cabinets from the early age like this pair have survived the time! These cabinets measure 57” x 74” H x 24” D for each.

  • #15805 Antique Tapered Cabinet with Rare Etched Brass Butterfly Fitting

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    (清代栢木刻三元五桂蝴蝶大櫃) Antique large size tapered wedding clothing cabinet with original large size brass fitting in a butterfly shape inlaid with old colorful glass. In the center of this large brass fitting, one can see some carved characters read as “三元五桂 (San Yuan Wu Guei) ”. This phrase came from the ancient court ranking system (科舉制度) when one won the first placement in the high exam (狀元) . The phrase is later used for wishing the newly weds prosperity with many generations to come (三元及第,五子登科,子孫福貴) . This cabinet came from southern China, Fujian province (福建) . It originally had red lacquer as that was the wedding color, but the wood has been stripped since and refinished in blond color. It is made of the beautiful southern Chinese cypress wood with nice grain. This cabinet is generously constructed with thick post and frame to last for many many years to come. It has ample storage space with two small drawers inside and two drawers at the bottom. It has been refinished in many layers of tree lacquer with traditional technique. In the detailed photos, one can see the nice carved detail and dovetail work as well. Dimensions: 52” W x 24” D x 68.5” H

  • #9995 Antique Chinese Gilt Painted Red Lacquer Cabinet Made with Zhu-Sha Mineral

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    清中早期畫金漆朱紅平面大櫃 This older and larger size antique northern Chinese gilt-painted red lacquer cabinet is constructed with a “Flat-Front, 平面” “Four-Cornered, 四角方櫃” style with a deeper pocket compartment that is almost one third of the full height of the cabinet in ratio. The whole cabinet is lavishly covered with very thick red lacquer pigment made primarily from the Zhu-Sha (朱砂)mineral material with thick coats of black lacquer underneath the red. On the red surface, some repaired, it is painted with a combination of techniques with different shades of gold by filling in the gold after a black lacquer drawing had been drawn first for the contour shapes as well as applying the gold substance directly onto the red surface in a brush painting style on some parts of the painting. This cabinet with bold and striking color pigments that remain to be incredibly vivid and “alive” is graced by time with many depths of texture that reveal different colors and process of its impressive lacquer working. This older and rarer cabinet is possibly from the 18th century, while some others with painted lacquer can possibly be from the late 19th to the early 20th century period with more simplified lacquer work. Cabinet like this one with such lavish and costly material and work can only come from, outside of palace, a prominent family. Dimensions: 46 1/8” W x 21 1/4” D x 73” H

  • #AR004 Antique Carved Large Ju Wood Cabinet with Converted Pocket Doors

    Larger Armoire and Cabinet Chinese Furiture ...

    2200.00

    950.00

    Antique carved large cabinet converted into an entertainment cabinet with pocket style sliding doors and newly built center inside; made of Ju wood (Southern Elm) and beautifully carved. late 19th to early 20th century. A great value! 45.25"w x 23.25"d x 66.75"h

  • #9996 Antique Extra Tall Ju Wood Red Lacquer Cabinet with Fu Character

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    (明式櫸木帶福字清代上海紅櫥) This is an excellent extra tall Ming style antique tapered Ju wood cabinet well designed and solidly constructed, coated with the original red lacquer made of ground organic mineral such as Zhu-Sha ( 朱砂). It is unusual partially because it has an old character of Fu ( 福, Blessing) written at the back of the cabinet to bless the user. Chinese lacquered cabinets were not generally made with good wood as the wood would have been covered with thick lacquer without being seen. This one is an exception. It uses generous cuts of Ju wood, the finer southern Chinese elm, besides it is thickly covered with lavish organic red color pigment that was very costly and only lucrative families could have afforded. This cabinet is very well and stately built with a good taste in design. It shows the mannerism in which good material, good craftsmanship, and design often go hand-in-hand. This cabinet originally came from near Shanghai area where more old Ju wood furniture pieces could be found. Though not an unusual style, this taller cabinet is built with a much better proportion than some other similar ones that are generally much smaller in size and with less superior construction, made of pine, fir, and other more common and cheaper wood, that came from other neighboring areas. Unlike the doors made with several wood panels within each door frame, doors on this cabinet were built with single-board panel (獨板) inserted in the “Floating-Paneled” frame on each door. Doors made with this special feature will not easily develop cracks or widening gaps when in different weather condition. This cabinet was made as a wedding gift for a bride. Dimensions: 45"w x 24"d x 88"h

  • #6465 Excellent Antique Four-Door Round-Cornered Red Wedding Cabinet

    Larger Armoire and Cabinet Chinese Furiture ...

    8500.00

    4000.00

    This beautiful extra large size antique Ningbo style round-cornered red wedding cabinet is well designed with four doors with rounded door posts and legs as well as circular old brass plates all cohesively and well constructed together,presenting a simple yet elegant style. The original red lacquer on this piece is beautiful and vivid and is made of expensive organic color pigment derived from precious ground minerals. The inside still has the original old lacquer in light beige and light salmon color that are also very beautiful. This cabinet is made of excellent Ju wood and the doors of the cabinet are constructed with single-board which are less subjective to the cracking and opening without different weather condition. Refinished in an excellent French Polish finish with clear lacquer coats without disrupting the original color. Please also note that the four doors in the post style are inserted directly into the horizontal frame on the top rather than being secured and held by additional outside small holders like other similar pieces created at a later period. Some thin weather cracks. As is. Dimension: 51"L * 24"D * 75"H

  • #10523 Rare 17th Century Golden Thread Nan Mu Hardwood Scholar's Cabinet

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    Very rare 17th century large size scholar's cabinet made of Golden Thread Nan Mu with original old thick lacquer inside. Golden-Thread Nan-Mu was msotly used for building supports and coffins for the imperial family and wealthy class during ancient China. Few old furniture pieces made of this wood can be found, especially one used by the literati class like this one is extremely rare. The dramatic tiger skin- like grain on the doors is the typical character of this wood while the rest of the wood carries very fine golden speckles which is why this wood is named. Dimensions: 42"w x 20"d x 79 1/2"h

  • #11199 17-18th Century Medium Size Ju Wood Scholar's Cabinet

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    17-18th century Ming style scholar's cabinet made of Ju wood with old fittings and original lacquer inside. One repair on one of the door posts. Otherwise, it is in fine original unfinished condition with beautiful old patina from the Ju wood. Compared to other types of softwood, Ju wood is a denser wood that adjusts better to the different climates and ages to beautiful patina. This piece with a classical design is one pick out of many! Dimensions: 34"w x 17"d x 54 1/2"h

  • #7864 Very Rare Pair of Antique Ming Style Cabinets with Table Base

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    Very rare pair of antique Ming style cabinets with table base. Dark lacquer outside, original old Pi-Huei lacquer inside. With old circular brass plates. 150-250 years old. French Polish over original black lacquer. Dimensions: 34.75" x 18" x 71"

  • #6629 Rare Antique Ju Wood Ming Style Cabinet with Fine Dragon Carvings

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    An early style tall and tapered antique Ju wood two-door cabinet with doors made of rare Jin-Si-Nan-Mu wood intricately carved with stylized dragon in a medallion shape; with old circular brass plates and old lacquer inside. Dimensions: 42"w x 20"d x 77"h

  • #7158 Pair of Excellent Antique Carved Ju Wood Cabinets

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    32000.00

    13500.00

    Pair of excellent antique Ju wood cabinets with original carved floral design, old lacquer finish, and large size carved old brass fittings. French Polish finish over the original lacquer. Ju wood furniture pieces are sought after by connoisseurs of Chinese furniture. It is the number one wood outside of Chinese hardwood. Ju wood furniture has been dated to 17th century and later. Good antique Ju wood furniture pieces are hard to find. In Chinese art, a pair of objects are also valued much more than two single ones together. Dimensions: 42 1/4"w x 22 1/2"d x 67 3/8"h

  • #7481 Rare Pair of Antique Hat Chests with Original Extra Large Old Brass Fittings

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    Beautiful rare pair of antique hat chests with the original extra-large old brass plates and the original thick old brass hinges with green patina. Purchased from the old Beijing Arts & Crafts in the mid 1980's. This was the only pair stored in their basement at the time with all other antiques and old crafts. This pair has been in Shen's collection for many years until recently brought to our showroom. The original darkish brown lacquer had been lifted to reveal the beautiful wood grain of the Northern Chinese elm. Beijing Arts and Crafts had been the largest government entity for the communist China for selling to foreigners arts and crafts until China's free economy took stage in the 1980's. This pair of unusual cabinets signifies the ending of an old era of China's economy and social structure. Dimensions: Each measures 45 3/4"w x 22 1/2"d x 81"h

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