Suzhou Low Elm Cabinet
Jiangsu, circa 1880
This decorative low cabinet originates from the Suzhou in Jiangsu province - a city known for its canals, bridges and waterways and which was one of the main centres for fine furniture making during the Ming dynasty. This cabinet dates to a later period around the end of the nineteenth century, but is in a classic design, with multiple drawers and doors fitted with decorative hardware.
The cabinet is made from beech wood, with the hardware being aged but not original. The central panel could be locked in place to secure valuables. It can still be removed but the orignal metal key is now missing. The two sets of outer doors each have a centre post between them that can be removed for easier access. Once used for storing valuable items and for displaying ceramics and vases, the cabinet is perfect today as a low sideboard or as a stand for a television.
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