the well-polished translucent white stone carved with a lion seated on its hind legs with its head turned sharply to the right, its large round eyes framed by bushy brows, the cub striding-up alongside
Hei-Chi, Jades from the Hei-Chi Collection, Beijing, 2006, p. 178.
Compare a related carving sold in our London rooms, 7th June 1994, lot 107; and another included in the exhibition Jades from China, Museum of East Asian Art, Bath, 1994, cat. no. 291. The ferocity created by the open-work fangs revealed through the open mouth is rarely found on Ming carving and highlights the skill and creativity of the carver. Compare a Han figure of a chimera with a similarly rendered face, in the collection of W.P. Chung, included in the exhibition Chinese Jade Carving, Hong Kong Museum of Art, Hong Kong, 1983, cat. no. 126.
Carvings of animals with their young were a popular motif in the Ming and Qing dynasties. The archaistic ears and the flat-cut mouth are typical features of jade animal carving in the Ming period.
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