Painted Black Shanxi Chest
Shanxi, circa 1900
This pretty, painted trunk is of a type used by opera troupes in China to store their props and costumes. The trunks would be brightly painted with various designs - often showing scenes from operas but also with flowers. In this case the central section is painted with water lilies or lotus flowers, set within a frame of square scrolling patterns that were common as a motif on Qing period and later furniture. More flowers and vases are shown on the outer section. The trunk has a simple brass clasp fitted to allow it to be secured and is a good size to be used as a side table next to a sofa or bed, with plenty of storage space inside.
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