East Asia, China, Qing Dynasty, ca. 1644 to 1912 CE. Ten jade carvings, eight depicting single human figures, one depicting an adult and child, and the last depicting a monkey with two smaller monkeys. Two are white - the adult and child, and a small monk carrying a sack over one shoulder. The others are all a very pale green and grey. These small figures are part of an incredibly long Chinese tradition of creating intricate carvings from jade. Chinese art has incorporated jade since the Neolithic period; quarries for nephrite, the formal name for jade, have been found in modern-day southern Mongolia that date to ca. 4000 BCE. The stone was prized for its hardness, its beautiful coloration (with a milky white being the most desired), and its durability. Size of largest figure: 1.35" W x 2.5" H (3.4 cm x 6.4 cm); size of case: Size: 9.35" W x 6.8" H (23.7 cm x 17.3 cm)
Jade became associated with immortality, used to make everything from everyday household objects and decoration to the ceremonial suits in which Han dynasty emperors were buried – with the belief that jade would preserve the body and the soul for eternity. By the Qing Dynasty, they had become collectible items in the Western world, where many people were fascinated by traditional Chinese culture and decorative arts.
Provenance: private E.S. collection, Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA
All items legal to buy/sell under U.S. Statute covering cultural patrimony Code 2600, CHAPTER 14, and are guaranteed to be as described or your money back.
A Certificate of Authenticity will accompany all winning bids.
We ship worldwide to most countries and handle all shipping in-house for your convenience.