Princeton University Library Catalog

Classical Chinese huanghuali furniture from the Haven Collection / Chu-pak Lau.

Lau, Chu-Pak [Browse]
Hong Kong : University Museum and Art Gallery, the University of Hong Kong, 2016.
358 pages : illustrations (chiefly color) ; 31 cm
Summary note:
The University Museum and Art Gallery at the University of Hong Kong presents Classical Chinese Huanghuali Furniture from the Haven Collection and publishes this informative edition in conjunction with the exhibition. Chinese huanghuali furniture is world-famous and, for the longest time, has been collected in both East and West. The fine selection displayed here shows both domestic furniture and scholars' items, such as brush pots and chests. In Ming dynasty China, traditional wood architecture and Buddhist thrones inspired Chinese furniture makers and, as trade expanded, so did the amount of hardwood furniture in the form of sophisticated movable pieces and built-in interiors. Ming furniture is known for its elegant lines and carved details. During the reign of Emperor Longqing (1567-1572) China opened its borders, previously implemented import bans were lifted and a greater variety of building materials became available. Consequently, during the Ming and Qing dynasties (1368-1911) the most celebrated types of domestic furniture were made from huanghuali and zitan woods. The elegant dark hardwood with natural shine is remarkable for the fact that Chinese furniture is typically made from solid timber, not an invisible subconstruction covered by a decorative veneer, as is so often the case in the West. The strength of each individual element of a piece of furniture and the consistent color matter, as every detail is exposed and the precision of the joints and the size and position of the dowels are all visual elements of an often simple and graceful design. In some pieces the joints are detectable and accessible, sometimes demountable, or else expertly hidden in the more sophisticated pieces. Applied surface finishes were generally only a layer of wax; no stains or clear lacquer seals were added to the dense and inherently decorative woods.
Catalog of an exhibition held at The University of Hong Kong, University Museum and Art Gallery, September 7 - November 20, 2016.
Bibliographic references:
Includes bibliographical references (pages 357-358).
Foreword / Dr. Florian Knothe -- Foreword / Curtis Evarts -- Preface / Dr. Chu-Pak Lau -- Classical Chinese furniture : Hong Kong beginnings / Tin Wong -- Cultural manifestations of Ming style furniture / Dr. Kwong-Tai Lam and Dr. Chu-Pak Lau -- From the Haven Collection : beds and platforms -- Chairs -- Tables -- Cabinets -- Cases -- Stands and screen -- Miscellaneous -- Afterword / Dr. Kossen Man-Chit Ho -- Afterword / Dr. Chu-Pak Lau -- Bibliography.
FurnitureChinaHistoryMing-Qing dynasties, 1368-1912Exhibitions [Browse]
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