Suzhou Book Cabinet, Chinese Antique
Shanxi, circa 1880
This simple, square-cornered cabinet is made from a combination of beech for the frames, and 'nanmu' - a rarer and more prized Chinese wood - for the doors. The door panels have a beautiful wood grain that matches on each side and is reminiscent of tiger skin. The cabinet is from Suzhou, an ancient city in Jiangsu province to the west of Shanghai, where it would have been used to store books and documents, with vases or other ornaments placed in the top, open shelf section. There is a single removable shelf inside the lower section.