Red and Gold Butterfly Cabinet
Shanxi, circa 1920
This gorgeous cabinet would add a splash of colour and warmth to any interior, with its deep red lacquer finish and contrasting decorative butterflies in old gold. Butterflies were a common motif on Chinese furniture, particularly in Shanxi province, as they symbolise both long life and a happy marriage. Here the 'miao jin' gold leaf decoration has worn in areas to show the black base underneath and it is likely that the paintings have been retouched at some point since the cabinet was first produced. Unusually, the circular hardware on the doors is old rather than a recent replacement. With a single removable shelf on the inside, the cabinet would look wonderful as an accent piece in a living room.
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