Pair of Carved Shells

Step 14 of 17

Seven ladies and a boy

Related images

The third layer of figurative scenes on this shell shows seven ladies and a boy. They stand next to a large round window partly veiled by a curtain depicted similarly to comparable curtain constructions that frame views in Guangzhou export paintings.

Three of the women hold fans while others bring food in two large covered bowls and a basket to a table on which four tea cups have been placed. The table is surrounded by ceramic stools typical for Chinese gardens of that period. Garden gatherings of women with bound feet and in similar dress as those on the shell are also a motif in Guangzhou paintings.