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Chang Qing. Illustrating the Life of Confucius: A Cinnabar Lacquer Vase in the Crow Museum of Asian Art

The Chinese first used the sap of the lacquer tree as a protective and decorative coating material as early as the Eastern Zhou dynasty. In the Qing dynasty, large lacquer objects from the imperial workshop in Beijing were among items favoured by the court. One such vase, in the Crow Collection of Asian Art, bears a design rarely seen on lacquerware, featuring narrative illustrations of the life of Confucius. Chang Qing offers a detailed discussion of the vase and the various scenes depicted on it.

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July/August 2019
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