Pair of plaques, anonymous, 1600 - 1699

Pair of plaques, anonymous, 1600 - 1699

copper (metal), d 64.5cm × d 0.3cm. More details

These plaques, possibly used as table tops, are covered with auspicious symbols: the butterfly represents a long life, and the magpie joy, while the blossoming plum tree and bamboo signify life force. The cloisonné enamel technique flourished in China from the Ming dynasty (1368–1644) onwards. Copper wire soldered onto the copper ground created the outlines of the design; these spaces were then filled with coloured glass paste, which melted and flowed when heated.

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