Panel with gourds on vines


On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 220

As the word for gourd is a homophone of “fortune and prosperity” in Chinese, the fruit became a popular motif in eighteenth-century art. Here, meticulously woven silk threads represent ten gourds growing out of lush vines. The large gourd at center is imbued with additional auspicious meaning. Over a geometric-patterned background, the artist added two Chinese characters that read “grand luck” (da ji) and images of the Eight Buddhist Treasures.

Panel with gourds on vines, Silk, wool, and metal thread tapestry (kesi), China

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