Water Buffalo


Not on view

One of the innovations of Shang jade carving was the creation of figures in the round. The artists further ornamented this water buffalo with spirals that recall bronze decorative motifs. They created the illusion of the patterns being raised by engraving the surface with two slightly beveled parallel lines. A hole piercing the figure’s mouth and lower lip suggests it was probably worn as an ornament or a talisman.

Water Buffalo, Jade (nephrite), China

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