Pair of Antique Carved Fu Lions
Item No. 16735
19th Century, N/A, China
Wood with Polychrome
7.5" x 6.75" x 3.5"
( 19.05 x 17.145 x 8.89 cm)
(H x W x D)
This pair of antique fu lions from South China was a decorative element in an architectural rendering or a component of a piece of furniture as it is fully finished on three sides and has a flat section with a square hole on its back into which a horizontal fitting was placed. They are two crouching males, resting their front paws on top of an orb or brocaded ball which represents the jewel of the law, a pearl, or an egg.
They are especially whimisical, with their open mouths revealing their flat upper teeth above curled red tongues. They are posed in a crouching position,the back left paws curved in in a playful manner with pointed black claws. Their broad faces with large bulbous noses, bulging eyes under arched brows with verticle striations, curving red protruding lips and high cheek bones are framed by flopping ears with vertial countours, the right ears noticibly shorter than the left ones. Two rows of gold and red fur line their heads, and their bodies are partially covered in striated decorative fur with tendrils. Long striated curved tails cover the back paws.
Fu lions are symbols of superhuman strength and within Buddhism are protectors and mounts of holy beings. Carvings such as these, or in larger sizes, were placed ourside residences, throughout homes interiirs including on home altars and as decorative elements on architecural strucures and furniture.
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