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Zitan Wood Cabinet with Enamel Inlays

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Period: Qianlong reign (1736-1795), Qing dynasty (1644-1911)
Medium: zitan wood, enamel painting, copper fittings
Origin: Guangdong Production
Dimensions: height: 185 cm, width: 96 cm, depth: 42 cm

The upper part of the cabinet is a five-partition antique shelf. Each partition, in different shapes, is decorated with cloisonné frame aprons and spandrels on upper and side edges. The openwork aprons and spandrels are shaped in the kui dragon and passion flower patterns. The antique shelf is backed with wood panels which are inlaid with mirrors. Below the drawers, a pair of cabinet doors is inlaid with enamel paintings depicting dragons among clouds. Each door has double frames, with the outer frame broader than the inner. The doors are strengthened with engraved copper straps, as are the drawer pulls and braces.
  The cabinet is of superb quality and beautiful shape. The choice of precious timber such as zitan wood and the combination of many crafting techniques including enamel painted inlays, cloisonné enameling, and copper incising copper carving and chiseling reflect Cantonese furniture styles and Cantonese carpenters' consummate skills during the Qianlong era.

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