700
700

PROPERTY FROM THE PEONY COLLECTION

AN EXCEPTIONAL AGATE 'DEMON MASK' FITTING
NEOLITHIC PERIOD, SHANDONG LONGSHAN CULTURE
Estimate
300,000400,000
LOT SOLD. 1,187,500 HKD
JUMP TO LOT
700

PROPERTY FROM THE PEONY COLLECTION

AN EXCEPTIONAL AGATE 'DEMON MASK' FITTING
NEOLITHIC PERIOD, SHANDONG LONGSHAN CULTURE
Estimate
300,000400,000
LOT SOLD. 1,187,500 HKD
JUMP TO LOT

Details & Cataloguing

Chinese Art, including Snuff Bottles and Jades from an Old Hong Kong Family Collection

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Hong Kong

AN EXCEPTIONAL AGATE 'DEMON MASK' FITTING
NEOLITHIC PERIOD, SHANDONG LONGSHAN CULTURE
the front side carved in varying levels of relief with strongly defined facial features, portrayed with slanting elliptical eyes with rounded pupils flanking a high-bridged nose with curled back nostrils, an open mouth revealing fangs and clenching teeth, the reverse side incised with an intricate design of demonic mask and drilled with a groove at the upper part, the fitting pierced through vertically with an aperture, of translucent tawny agate
3.9 cm, 1 1/2  in.
Read Condition Report Read Condition Report

Exhibited

Angus Forsyth and Brian McElney, Jades from China, The Museum of East Asian Art, Bath, 1994, cat. no. 65.

Literature

Roger Keverne (ed.), Jade, London, 1991, p. 67, fig. 29.

Catalogue Note

This unusual and rare mask is remarkable for its expertly carved and finished features, from the pointed eyes to the round nose, and the menacing fangs and teeth. Its attribution to the Longshan culture in Shandong is discussed by Angus Forsyth and Brian McElney in the catalogue to the exhibition Jades from China, op.cit., p. 154, where the incised mask on the reverse of this piece is compared to the incised design on a jade axe from the Grenville L. Winthrope collection, now in the Arthur M. Sackler Museum, Harvard University Art Museums, Cambridge, illustrated in Max Loehr, Ancient Chinese Jades, Cambridge, 1975, pl. 192.

This mask also share similarities with anthropomorphic jade carvings attributed to the Shijiahe culture in Hubei province, such as two masks unearthed at Xiaojiawuji, Tianmen, illustrated in Gu Fang, The Complete Collection of Unearthed Jades in China, Beijing, 2005, vol. 10, pls 2 and 3, together with one excavated at Luojia Bailing, Tianmen, pl. 30; one excavated from the Western Zhou tomb at Zhangjiapo, Chang'an, Shaanxi province, but attributed to the Shijiahe culture, illustrated in Jessica Rawson, Mysteries of Ancient China, London, 1996, pl. 54; another from the collection of Henry J. Oppenheim, now in the British Museum, London, illustrated in Roger Keverne (ed.), Jade, op.cit., pl. 47; and a further mask attributed to the latter years of the Shijiahe culture, included in Collectors' Exhibition of Archaic Chinese Jades, National Palace Museum, Taipei, 1995, cat. no. 18. See also a mask attributed to the Longshan culture, in the Shanghai Museum, illustrated in Shanghai Museum. Ancient Chinese Jade Gallery, Shanghai, 2000, p. 11 (bottom).

Chinese Art, including Snuff Bottles and Jades from an Old Hong Kong Family Collection

|
Hong Kong