Elm Cabinet with Fluted Spandrels
Shandong, circa 1880
This distinctively shaped cabinet is in elm and comes from the city of Linyi in Shandong province, northern China. The rounded legs and frames are typical of furniture from the area, with the doors fitted directly into frames above and below on wooden dowel hinges. The carved, fluted spandrels, tapering down towards the cabinet's feet, give an elegant 'butterfly' profile from the front, with a sense of fluidity and balance.
Originally used to store valuables and personal possessions, the two upper drawers could be locked by securing the two longer brass fittings to the centre frame between them. The centre post between the doors is removable for easier access to the interior space.
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