Large Red Lacquer Altar Cabinet
Shanxi, circa 1830
This imposing red lacquer sideboard would dominate any space, with its rich red finish and impressive proportions. At over two and half metres long it would also provide a huge amount of storage space in a reception area or dining room, with three sets of doors and six drawers. The sideboard comes from Shanxi in central China and, whilst the red lacquer finish is old and worn, particularly around the base, the circular hardware on the doors is a more recent replacement for the originals. The cabinet has a long, extended lid over the thick side frames, each ending in the everted flanges that suggest a religious purpose. It most likely therefore doubled as a display surface for ancestor offerings and prized possessions as well as for storage in the main central hall of a Chinese home.
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