Today we arrive at British Museum Room 95 – Chinese Jade, for our weekly Museum Guide excursion, led by Divvya Nirula.
For centuries now, the Chinese have mined and carved wonderful objets d’art out of jade. This gallery at the British Museum showcases a unique collection of such artefacts. Presented here are our top three must-see objects on view here. Next time you visit the museum, do not miss these!
1. Snuff Bottle, circa 1780-1820, by Unknown
2. Jade Pendant, 1200-771BC, by Unknown
3. Jade Brush Pot, 18th century AD, by Unknown
Some fun facts about the Museum :
- The collection of jade objects in Room 33B has been loaned to the British Museum by Sir Joseph Hotung from his own personal collection.
- Sir Hotung is an art collector and businessman who was born in Shanghai and spent his childhood in China. He is associated with some of the top art museums around the world, in different capacities, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art and Washington’s Sackler gallery.
- It is believed that jade has been used in Chinese handicrafts as early as the Neolithic period.
- Jade is a mineral that is naturally greenish in colour. There are some varieties that are also yellow and white. It is durable, translucent, hard and heavy. Large deposits of jade can be found around China and other parts of South East Asia. For all these reasons, it has historically been used in the making of Chinese artefacts and ornaments.
- Jade is considered extremely valuable and rare in most parts of the world. It gains added value when sculpted into by a skilled craftsman.
A Final Thought :
Between their gallery for Chinese jade and Room 95, which displays Chinese ceramics, the British Museum provides great scope for exploration of the crafts of ancient and modern China.
Visit Art From Us Archive for Museum Guide collated by Divvya Nirula. Here you shall find more suggestions on where you should visit next. And what you should see there.