Dimensions: 10.8cm high, 26.7cm diameter
Michael H. Healy
Anthony Carter, 2015
A private Asian collection
Honolulu Academy of Art, 2002
China Institute of America, New York, 2005
Santa Barbara Museum of Art, 2006
Museum für Lackkunst, Münster, 2007
‘Masterpieces of Chinese Lacquer from the Mike Healy Collection’, Julia White, Honolulu Academy of Art, 2006, p. 42-43
The large, round box is decorated overall with a pommel-scroll design radiating out from the centre of the box towards an upside-down pommel-shape on the edges. The box is carved to reveal the black scroll design, interspaced with thin bands of red and black lacquer along the cut-away edges, adding further depth to this intricate piece.
The box is an excellent example of a Chinese lacquer carving technique called ‘tixi’. It is the carved form of a layered lacquer called ‘xipi’. First developed in China, it spread to Japan where it is sometimes referred to as ‘guri’.
Compare a slightly smaller, octagonal box from the Florence and Herbert Irving Collection in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Accession Number 2015.500.1.3a, b. A larger octagonal box with decorated with pommel scrolls can be found in the Royal Scottish Museum, illustrated in Lee, Sammy Y., ‘Catalogue of the Collection of Chinese Lacquer, as exhibited in the Royal Scottish Museum’, 1964, SYL 2.
 Hu Shih-chang and Jane Wilkinson, ‘Chinese Lacquer’, Edinburgh, 1998, p. 26-27