The diverse color palette of enamels during the Qianlong period allowed for greater creativity and flexibility in painted decoration. Trompe-l'oeil decoration transformed works into playful, if not deceiving objects, transforming porcelain into seemingly rich brocade fabrics, beautifully grained woods, and a variety of other materials.
Compare the similar Qianlong-marked porcelain box bearing a Leshan Tang mark, with similar gilt-decorated 'brocade' covers in the Palace Museum collection, Beijing, illustrated in The Complete Collection of Treasures of the Palace Museum - 39 - Porcelains with Cloisonne Enamel Decoration and Famille Rose Decoration, Hong Kong, 1999, no. 147. The Palace Museum box consists of a single book, as opposed to two books, as seen in the present box. However, a pair of boxes very similar to the present box was sold at Christie's New York, 22 March 2012, lot 2129. Other Leshan Tang-marked trompe-l'oeil porcelain book-form boxes have been sold, including a famille rose example consisting of a stack of two books with pink and lilac-ground 'brocade' covers sold at Christie's Hong Kong, 30 May 2006, lot 1235, and a faux bois box in the form of a single book sold at Christie's London, 10 May 2011, lot 255.