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The Chinese Bronze Sculpture You Should Know
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Fuhao Zun, also known as Xiao Zun is a piece of bronze of late Shang, used as the wine container in ancient China. Xiao is commonly referred to as owl, which is a mythical bird loved and worshipped by the ancients. This xiao zun in question can be termed as the boutique among the zuns in the form of birds and animals. In 1976, the original one was unearthed in the tomb of Fu Hao at Yin Ruins in Anyang of Henan province, now in the possession of Chinese History Museum. This noted bronze was made in the shape of an owl holding its head high. All over the body is engraved with decorations, which are gorgeous and exquisite.
On the part of peck and breast is cicada-shaped pattern while on both sides of the head is dragon and patterns of snake and flying bird respectively on the wings and the tail. The whole bronze can be said a perfect combination of the stereoscopic and plane way. The head of the owl is slightly raised and full of vitality. The entire modeling of this ancient bronze sculpture is powerful and strong, revealing a wild and mysterious meaning, which has amazed the public. There is a beautiful phoenix and tiny kui dragon cast on the back of its head, adding some soft and ethereal joy to the heart of audiences.
Fu Yi Gong is a very unique bronze statue wine container both in the shape and decoration of the late Shang Dynasty (13th century BC~11th century BC). The front end of the lid is shaped in an upright animal head with horns and ears raised in the air. Two eyes widely open, giving an air of solemnity. Horn-shaped animal mask is carved on the rear lid while the two ears protrudes out the surface. In the center of the lid is embossed with a small dragon with long body and coiled tail. There are phoenix ornaments on both sides of this particular bronze, in front of which are two small snakes. The motif is phoenix pattern while the major one is especially large with elegant crest. This phoenix stands in raised head, graceful and polished. The claws were designed on the ring foot. This bronze is a piece of art treasure and a unity of form and spirit. Decorative techniques are skillful and practiced that make it a relatively unique artwork of the late Shang Dynasty.
Defang Ding is a piece of ancient chinese bronze cast in the early Western Zhou Dynasty (11th century BC), now kept in Shanghai Museum. This special bronze has two erect handles, folded mouth rim, shallow belly and slender column feet. The decoration on the belly is animal mask while the dragon pattern on both sides takes the thunder pattern as the motif. The pattern of the ox-head on the feet is clear-cut and neat. It turns out to be a bronze sculpture hard to come by. There are 24 words of inscriptions in 24 lines record that when Emperor Cheng of Zhou was worshipping his ancestor Emperor Wu, the aristocrat De was involved in this affair and awarded by the king. So De produced this Ding to memory this event. This bronze is concise and graceful in modeling, definite a good item for collection and appreciation.
Fangjia are among the rarest vessels from the Shang Dynasty and only a few other examples can be seen around the world in museums and private collections. This elaborately cast bronze is richly decorated with an owl motif on three of the four sides; a bird considered to be an omen of good fortune by the ancient Chinese. This unique bronze dragon may once have been owned by royalty or a particularly high-ranking official and is likely to have been used at banquets in temples, when sacrifices of food and wine were offered to the ancestors. A jia is a cauldron for warming wine and can be used for ceremony.
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