Asian Antiques by Silk Road
All Items : Archives : Regional Art : Asian : Southeast Asian : Pre 1920 item #668482 (stock #63-63)
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In Burma, this figure known as Shin-thiwali, represented the protector of travelers and was found in Buddhist temples and in private homes. Immediately identifiable from the walking staff, beads, begging bowl and bald pate, he was thought to live in the forest and possess powers to protect against theft and fires. This one, with his enigmatic half smile and mild expression, appears to harbor some secret knowledge...
All Items : Archives : Regional Art : Pre 1910 item #712306 (stock #18-14)
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A silk brocade Japanese Meiji Period obi has a pattern of cranes surrounded by colorful explosions of chrysanthemums and pine boughs. The obi (kimono belt) is one-half the width (han haba) of the standard 12-inch-wide obi. Its rich repeat pattern runs the full 10-foot length of the piece on both sides, similar to the wide maru obi worn by Japanese women for formal occasions. Narrow obi such as this one were worn more casually, perhaps in the summer or at home...
All Items : Archives : Regional Art : Asian : Southeast Asian : Pre 1910 item #140879 (stock #57-03)
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This classic Burmese Pagan (Bagan) standing Buddha holds both hands in karana mudra, gesture of expelling all evil. Once completely covered with gold leaf, there is still some gold remaining over the bronze figure, which dates to the late 18th/early 19th century. This Buddha has a mystical and graceful quality and, especially in profile, looks as if about to rise upward...
All Items : Archives : Regional Art : Asian : Indian Subcontinent : India : Pre 1900 item #157519 (stock #58-02)
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A gorgeous Indian dancer strikes a pose of pure attitude in this classic 19th century Indian miniature of the Rajasthan School. Of the various Indian schools of painting, Rajput and Rajput-Mughal styles have, in our view, the most enduring appeal. This Rajput work demonstrates the look of languorous elegance characteristic not only of that school of painting but of the architecture of palaces and temples that still exist throughout the state of Rajasthan...
All Items : Archives : Regional Art : Asian : Chinese : Pre 1980 item #933215 (stock #60-93)
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A large 42-inch diameter architectural window panel is constructed with the striking Chinese fretwork pattern called “cracked ice” or “broken glass.” The openwork gives this intricately fitted elm wood piece a light and airy look. Centering the fretwork is a pierced carving of a seated woman holding a fan. She is surrounded by a garden of finely carved trees and rocks set against a carved key design background...
All Items : Archives : Regional Art : Asian : Southeast Asian : Pre 1800 item #264730 (stock #08-19)
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Seated on an unusually tall, waisted lotus throne, this 18th century Burmese Buddha has a nicely carved face that changes expression depending on viewing angle. Viewed from above, the face has lowered eyes and a serene expression. Viewed from a lower angle, the eyes and mouth change and the face takes on a bemused, almost impish expression. The right hand, in earth-touching mudra, has extremely elongated and squared off fingers, typical of the period...
All Items : Archives : Regional Art : Asian : Chinese : Pre 1900 item #263543 (stock #58-64)
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Of the many handsome utilitarian items made of wood that were in use in Chinese households during the Qing Dynasty, this two-piece fir tub is one of the most interesting. It was used to bathe infants. The larger bottom portion was filled with warm water and the infant placed in the removable shallow basin, which served both as bath tub and warmer. Tub and basin are constructed of staves held in place by brass straps...
All Items : Archives : Regional Art : Pre 1920 item #717962 (stock #63-37)
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This lacquered wood sculpture of Manok-thi-ha, a double-bodied, human-headed lion, sat as a protector in a Shan Buddhist temple or monastery. The fantastic manok-thi-ha, a creature from Buddhist mythology, is said to roam Mount Meru (center of the Buddhist universe said to be in the Himalaya) along with other guardians of the Buddhist/Hindu cosmos such as garuda, kinnara and pyin-sa-yu-pa...
All Items : Archives : Regional Art : Asian : Chinese : Pre 1837 VR item #544404 (stock #60-54)
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This ancestor portrait of a handsomely robed Chinese couple includes a table plaque indicating their birth dates as November 2, 1398, and December 3, 1400. Generally commissioned after the death of the subjects, such portraits were later retouched as needed and sometimes were completely repainted. It was standard practice to add the faces and perhaps a few other elements to a pre-painted background...
All Items : Archives : Regional Art : Pre 1920 item #762583 (stock #10-53)
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Three elephants carry this Shan Buddha seated in padmasana position with right hand in earth-touching mudra. The early 20th century figure is carved of teak wood sealed with lacquer and gilded. Thayo, a thickened lacquer, defines edging on the robe and adornments on the heads of the elephants. The Shan, a Southeast Asian minority people living primarily in Burma, produced a wide repertoire of Buddha figures in celebration of their devout Buddhist faith...
All Items : Archives : Regional Art : Asian : Japanese : Pre 1940 item #681535 (stock #44-08)
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This lithograph depicts a Japanese warrior saving his master, Tokugawa, during a battle in 1653, early in the Tokugawa shogunate. It is from "Heroes of Japan," an illustrated series printed in 1935. The scene shows the heroic figure, Goto Matagaemon, on the right , in the skirmish during which he killed 17 rebels who were in pursuit of the Tokugawa leader of Japan. The lithograph is in perfect condition and is double-matted with a black silk outer mat and a gold inner mat...
All Items : Archives : Regional Art : Asian : Southeast Asian : Pre 1900 item #913678 (stock #57-21)
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This large carved teak kinnari, mythical half man/half bird creature, surrounded by curving foliage was the equivalent of a hood ornament when it was perched on a two-wheeled bullock cart in 19th century Burma...
All Items : Archives : Regional Art : Pre 1920 item #754025 (stock #63-45)
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A lion-like creature revered both as a Buddhist guardian and as the symbol for success in new endeavors, this bronze Burmese chinthei is an especially imaginative version of the leogryph seen throughout Southeast Asia and India. In Burma, entrances to most Buddhist pagodas and temples are protected by pairs of chinthei, and the mythical creatures adorn ceremonial lacquer pieces, bells, banners and plaques. The Burmese chinthei also is presented and displayed to confer success on new ventures, an...
All Items : Archives : Regional Art : Asian : Chinese : Pre 1900 item #381739 (stock #58-88)
Silk Road Gallery
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Exotic flowers and foliage surround a village scene painted on the front of this large 19th century Mongolian trunk. In the center vignette are two girls who appear to be anxiously awaiting a pronouncement from a fortune teller. The trunk is made of tung wood, which comes from trees native to China and is highly insect resistant. This type of wood, the trunk's generous size and its charming painting, make it perfectly suited for use at the end of a bed to store quilts or woolens. The inside is ...
All Items : Archives : Regional Art : Asian : Chinese : Pre 1900 item #375672 (stock #61-46)
Silk Road Gallery
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A type of bench found in teahouses and homes in Qing Dynasty China, this is a versatile piece of furniture that also could have served as a martial arts weapon. Benches in this design still are used in kung fu training to build strength. According to kung fu lore, the benches originally found their way into the martial arts when teahouse arguments broke out and patrons picked up the benches to drive home their points. This particular bench, from the late 19th century, is made of walnut and is qu...
All Items : Archives : Regional Art : Pre 1970 item #768593 (stock #35-01)
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The curved white tusk of a wild boar was fitted with three silver filigree bands to create this tribal necklace from one of Indonesia's out islands. This unusual mid to late 20th century piece carries the aura of the jungle but its island tribal origin is unknown to us. Numerous ornaments, including small statues, utensils and kris handles, fashioned from various types of horn and bone were believed within island tribal cultures to have magical properties. The tusk hangs from a silver chain atta...
All Items : Archives : Regional Art : Asian : Japanese : Pre 1920 item #407010 (stock #61-47)
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Used for growing silkworms, this large shallow bamboo basket was lined with mulberry leaves and suspended horizontally under the eaves of a Japanese farmhouse. According to rural lore, the silkworms ate so voraciously that, in the still of the night, the sounds of their chewing on the leaves could be heard throughout the house. Silk production is no longer a cottage industry in Japan so these old bamboo baskets have taken on new purpose as decorative household items. (See "At Home with Japanese ...
All Items : Archives : Regional Art : Pre 1960 item #816112 (stock #60-01)
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This feng li (wind cut) viewing stone with its wonderful other-worldly surface is from Alashan Zuo Qi on the western end of China's Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region. There in the Gobi Desert, the dry winds and blowing sand shape stones with molten, craggy surfaces unlike those of scholar stones collected anywhere else in China. This one, called "The Old Man" by its previous owner, can indeed reveal with a little imagination a bent figure with a large and drooping head, his chin resting on the ha...