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A RARE SMALL PALE GREENISH-WHITE JADE FIGURE OF A FOREIGNER
A RARE SMALL PALE GREENISH-WHITE JADE FIGURE OF A FOREIGNER

LATE MING-EARLY QING DYNASTY, 16TH-18TH CENTURY

Details
A RARE SMALL PALE GREENISH-WHITE JADE FIGURE OF A FOREIGNER
LATE MING-EARLY QING DYNASTY, 16TH-18TH CENTURY
The somewhat flat pebble is well carved in the round as the figure of a foreigner standing with his right hand resting on his staff and holding a brocade ball in his left hand. He wears a voluminous cloak over a long, buttoned coat tied at the waist, and a hood adorned with a feather that dangles in back. The softly polished stone has a very slight grey-green tinge and some areas of pale russet color. Together with Weisbrod Chinese Art Ltd., A Private Collection of Early Chinese Jade Carvings, New York, 1994.
3 ½ in. (8.9 cm.) high, box
Provenance
Weisbrod Chinese Art Ltd., New York, 6 December 1994.
Literature
Weisbrod Chinese Art Ltd., New York, A Private Collection of Early Chinese Jade Carvings, 1994, pp. 54-5, no. 24, front cover, and back cover.
Nicole De Bisscop, Chinese Jade and Scroll Paintings from the Dongxi Collection, Brussels, 1995, p. 87, no. 46.
Exhibited
A Private Collection of Early Chinese Jade Carvings, Weisbrod Chinese Art Ltd., New York, 28 November - 9 December 1994.
Chinese Jade and Scroll Paintings from the Dongxi Collection, Kredietbank Gallery, Brussels, 25 October - 17 December 1995; Kredietbank Luxembourg, 1 February - 13 April 1996, no. 46.

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Michael Bass
Michael Bass

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Lot Essay

This figure embodies a high level of sculptural quality. While the stone is flat, the artist carved this figure in such a way as to suggest a great deal of moment in the figure's robes and stance. The costume of this well-carved figure identifies him as a foreigner, possibly a tribute bearer. Small jade figures of this type were first made during the Tang dynasty when figures of foreigners were produced in various materials, representing the cosmopolitan society of the period. Two such standing figures from the collection of Dr. and Mrs. Cheng Te-k'un, both dated to the Tang dynasty, are illustrated by J. Rawson and J. Ayers in Chinese jade throughout the ages, Oriental Ceramic Society, London, 1975, nos. 216 and 219. Each figure is similarly identified as a foreigner by his apparel, which includes a cloak. The first figure, shown holding a peach, also wears a hood, while the second figure, a tribute bearer holding a jade boulder, wears somewhat baggy clothing reminiscent of that of the present figure, as is his broad face. Rather than wearing a hood, he is depicted with short curly hair bound with a fillet.

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