- This visually stunning round-topped storage chest is bursting with detail, from the relief-carved borders to the galloping horses on the top surface, to the intricate lines of calligraphy painted throughout. This piece is painted in brown and gold matte lacquer, and carefully antiqued to give it the look of a much-loved family heirloom. This collection of fine Chinese home furnishings is hand-crafted by artisans working in the age-old tradition of China's Fujian Province, known worldwide for its dazzling lacquerware and wood carving. Built with Philippine mahogany and elm wood, this furniture features an indigenous Fujian lacquering style which uses seven carefully polished layers of lacquer-tree sap to create a complex, beautiful, and sturdy surface; each piece is then antique-finished for a gorgeous authentic look. The resulting surface has a matte finish, unusual among Chinese lacquer furniture, which is usually very shiny. Many pieces also include genuine brass hardware, which is antiqued and finished to resist rust. These pieces are based on traditional designs steeped in ancient Asian history, and exhibit many common natural and cultural motifs, often adapted from ancient and beloved Asian art. Because of Fujian's proximity to Japan, many of these designs show a Japanese influence. For instance, many of these pieces depict geisha, a celebrated symbol of Japan. Other motifs include birds, animals, and flowers, all of which are meaningful in Buddhist and Confucian-influenced cultures. The painted panels also often include lines of calligraphy and red seals; these have often traditionally been included in Chinese paintings, and many tell stories or poems, adding a lyrical element to the simple beauty of the artwork.
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