Pair of Carved Shells

Step 5 of 17

The ferry

Flower boat, Qing 18th century - Auckland Museum - 1981.242

The angler is looking at a boat, a cross-water ferry. The ferry carries an elegant lady with a parasol whose servant fans fresh air towards her.

Views of ladies on boats are common throughout Guangzhou imagery and in some cases refer to the practice of floating brothels on so-called flower boats where prostitutes would sell their company or their services.

It was a view that did not go by unnoticed ...