Offered by: Mayfair Gallery
39 South Audley Street London W1K 2PP , England Call Seller 44.207.491.3435


Set of twelve antique Chinese painted bird studies on pith paper

$ 18,750
  • Description
    Set of twelve antique Chinese painted bird studies on pith paper
    Chinese, 19th Century
    Panel: Height 20cm, width 32cm
    Frame: Height 35.5cm, width 47cm, depth 1.5cm

    This fantastic collection of ornithological paintings wow with their vibrant colours. Depicting a variety of species including sparrows and peacocks, the paintings are rendered on a pith paper base which allows pools of watercolour paint to sit on the surface, creating vivid patches of colour. The birds are depicted in groups of two or three, situated amongst lush shrubbery and foliage either on the ground or adorning the tree branches on which they perch. Whilst shaded details add expert dimension to the feathers of the birds, the overall picture plane has a certain flatness which is typical of Chinese painting at the time.

    From the beginning of the 19th century, pith paintings by local Chinese artists became highly popular with Western travellers, as easily transportable mementos of local subjects. They were the perfect souvenir for Western tourists, and were often glued into photo albums for transport home.

    Each painting is ensconced in a later added painted wooden frame.

    As vibrant works of art with a charming character, these twelve paintings are an insight into the historical exchanges occurring between the East and the West.
  • More Information
    Origin: China
    Period: 19th Century
    Materials: Watercolour, pith paper, painted wood.
    Styles / Movements: Asian, Traditional
    Dealer Reference #: 17533
    Incollect Reference #: 700877
  • Dimensions
    W. 18.5 in; H. 13.98 in; D. 0.59 in;
    W. 47 cm; H. 35.5 cm; D. 1.5 cm;
Message from Seller:

Mayfair Gallery is a leading gallery in the field of art and antiques, holding a large collection of unique pieces for sale. The breadth of the gallery’s collection is wide, and includes items from a range of periods, styles and geographical origins, as well as works by famous artists and craftsmen. The main focus of the gallery’s collection is, however, on items produced during the 19th and early 20th century.

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