Permanence: Classical Chinese Stone Furniture for the Garden

NEW YORK

March 14 – April 30, 2003

Permanence: Classical Chinese Stone Furniture for the Garden

Selected works

Following the success of the First International Symposium on Classical Chinese Gardens, the exhibition Permanence: Classical Chinese Stone Furniture for the Garden brings together an unprecedented exhibition of classical Chinese garden furniture to be seen for the first time in the United States. This exhibition of about 40 examples of rare and beautifully carved stone garden furniture from China - most dating from the Ming dynasty (1368-1644) -will become a landmark exhibition for Chinese stone furniture.

The Chinese garden was greatly appreciated by scholar-officials and literati as a refuge for solace and contemplation and at times for less formal gatherings. Early paintings depict figures using outdoor furniture often resembling more natural rock formations. During the Ming dynasty, considered the golden age for Chinese furniture, however, there was an emphasis on more refined outdoor furniture which also served to limit the need for movement of furniture outside during outdoor gatherings. Due to the durability of stone as material, and as stylistically they were often inspired by architecture and other wood furniture, these finely carved works are in some cases a few of the remaining examples of their type to have survived.

Stone benches such as Recessed-leg Bench with Bridle Joints imitate wooden carpentry techniques while others such as Pair of Cabriole Leg Rectangular Benches show more detailed and elaborate relief carving. Drum Stools, another common form of outdoor seating vary and range in technical virtuosity and in the intricacy of the carving. Some highlights are Pair of Drum Stools with Flora and Pair of Drum Stools with Interlocking Carving, each carved from one piece of stone. Other notable pieces are Rectangular Side Table with Cabriole Legs and Low Square Table with Stone Top. Other types of stone furniture included in the exhibition are flower stands, basins, as well as guardian lions.

Held in conjunction with New York's Asian Art Week, the exhibition recreates the peaceful tranquility of the traditional Chinese Garden and has been designed with the assistance of the well known set and interior stylist Carlos Mota. An extensive catalogue accompanies the exhibition, with a preface by Robert H. Ellsworth, and an essay by David Ake Sensabaugh, Curator of Asian Art at the Yale University Art Gallery.

前波画廊将于2003年3月14日起举办题为《恒久之作:中国园林中的石制家俱》的作品。继第一届国际中国园林研讨会后,此次展览将向美国观众展现40多件中国古典园林家俱中的精品。

园林自古是文人士大夫休闲和隐居的地方。早期绘画中描绘的户外家俱多呈自然石形。明代被公认为古典园林的鼎盛时期,而园林中家俱的设计已转变为精巧简练。石制园林家俱多受古典建筑和木制家俱的影响。因石头耐久性强,许多石制家俱成为古典建筑和木制家俱造型结构的仅存实证。

展览中的“雕夹头榫方腿长条凳”借用木制家俱构造,而一对“雕三弯腿长方条凳”则运用精美细腻的雕刻作为装饰。石鼓凳是园林中常用的家俱,其设计装饰也丰富多彩,比如这次展览中的“雕牡丹纹石鼓墩一对”及“盘结形石鼓墩一对”。“架几式三弯腿石案”和“木身石面圆包圆裹腿式长方棋桌”也是这次展览中的经典作品。其他如花几,石盆及及石狮等均有展出。

此石制家俱展览将于纽约亚洲艺术节时开幕,由着名室内设计师Carlos Mota 专门设计,将向艺术爱好者展现一个详和宁静的中国古典花园陈设。前波画廊同时出版一本关于中国石制家俱的图录,其中包括安思远先生(Robert H. Ellsworth)的引言,及耶尔大学美术馆江文韦先生(David Ake Sensabaugh)为此次展览所撰写的文章。

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