Returned to lender The Met accepts temporary loans of art both for short-term exhibitions and for long-term display in its galleries.
Not on view
Made from tree sap, lacquer was one of the earliest inventions of East Asia. Its use in southeast China can be traced to the Neolithic period. Although raw lacquer is toxic, it is harmless when dry, and its remarkable resistance to water, acid, and heat makes it ideal for culinary utensils.
This group represents a set of tablewares for individual use, reflecting dining etiquette of the Han period. Each person had his or her own low table on which a tray of vessels for food and drink was placed. Guests did not sit around one large table, as they do today.
This artwork is meant to be viewed from right to left. Scroll left to view more.