Skip to product information
1 of 9

Hunter Gatherer

Antique Chinese Hand Carved Round Cinnabar Box with Lid

Antique Chinese Hand Carved Round Cinnabar Box with Lid

Exquisite cinnabar and blue enamel round box.

Artisans created the coral red or pink color by adding cinnabar, a naturally occurring mercury ore, to the lacquer. The lacquer came from a Sumac tree native to China and was harvested in much the same way as rubber, by cutting the bark of the tree and collecting the sap.

The intricate lacquer-ware was made by painting thin layers of lacquer on to a base article usually made of bamboo, wood or metal. As many as 300 layers were applied in this painstaking and time-consuming process, with each layer being allowed to dry before the application of the next.

Often the pieces were finished with a final layer of pure lacquer to seal in the highly toxic mercury ore used in the process. Modern pieces sold as cinnabar lacquer ware use non-toxic pigments.

Once the lacquering was complete, skilled craftsmen carved intricate shapes into the pieces with sharp blades. This highly skilled process required pinpoint accuracy which can be seen in the exceptionally fine detailing of the pieces.

Measurements are 4 1/2" in diameter at the opening of the bowl (gold/brass rim), including the top.
2 1/2" in height without the top. 3 1/2" with the top.
6" at it's roundest width.
Regular price $165.00
Regular price Sale price $165.00
Sale Sold out

Out of stock

View full details