Lacquered and carved wood
Diameter: 37.2 cm
Height: 5.4 cm
China, Yuan Dynasty (Second half of the 14th Century)
Kyoto National Museum
The volute design of this tray has been carved sharply out of thick layers of black and red lacquer, with a final surface coating in black.
The production of such carved lacquerware began in the Sung dynasty and increased during the Ming and Qing dynasties, from which many specimens have survived.
This late-Yuan Dynasty flower-shaped tray, with its unusual nine lobes, is an excellent example of this kind of carved lacquerware.