明早期 黑漆嵌螺鈿學士圖八方盤 Tray with Eighteen Scholars of the Tang
Ming dynasty (1368–1644)
Black lacquer with mother-of-pearl inlay
H. 1 5/8 in. (4.1 cm); Diam. 11 3/8 in. (28.9 cm); Diam. of foot 9 5/8 in. (24.4 cm)
Gift of Florence and Herbert Irving, 2015
Not on view
In the foreground, three scholar-gentlemen, identified by their clothing, are traveling on horseback toward a gate attended by two figures holding large fans. They are likely planning to join the five similar figures in the middle ground examining a painting displayed by two young attendants. Ten additional scholars are depicted on this dish, which illustrates the theme of the Eighteen Scholars of the Tang, a renowned historical group that served as advisors to the Tang emperor Taizong (r. 627–49).
Florence and Herbert Irving , New York (until 2015; donated to MMA)