An image of Narcissus basin-shaped incense burner with 'chi' dragon handles

Unknown Artist

Narcissus basin-shaped incense burner with 'chi' dragon handles

Other titles:
Square-shaped censer decorated with a pair of animals in high relief, Oval-shaped censer decorated with a pair of animals in high relief, Narcissus basin with 'qi' dragon handles
Location
Not on display
Further information

This elegant and refined oval-shaped basin has a shallow body sitting on four short legs in the 'ruyi' sceptre design. Two 'chi' dragons with arched bodies are cast on to the long sides of the bowl, serving as handles. 'Ruyi' (literally meaning 'as you wish'), was the name given to a sceptre first popular in the Six Dynasty period (220-589), and often depicted in Chinese art being held by learned men of the Confucian, Daoist and Buddhist religions. This type of Xuande (1426-1435) bronze was a favourite adornment of scholars' studios, so much so that by the late Ming dynasty, many had been widely copied – a tradition that continued into the Qing dynasty.

Asian Art Department, AGNSW, January 2012

Place of origin
China
Period
China: Ming dynasty 1368–1644, Xuande 1426–1435
Year
17th century
Media
Metalwork
Medium
bronze
Dimensions
18.4 x 14.8 cm; 14.5 x 11.0 cm stand
Credit
Gift from the J.H. Myrtle Collection 2003
Accession number
136.2003