Today's blog comes from Candace Weir, Central Library staff:
I love to look at books with pretty photos of interesting things: homey things that become treasures that are a joy to use. Things Chinese, a new addition to the CPL collection, is one of those books. It covers objects as diverse as cricket cages and dragons.
Chinese furnishings are some of the most delectable eye candy imaginable. There are door pulls shaped like carp and pottery stools incised with plum blossoms. Pottery abounds; pillows are actually made of it.
If I ever win the lottery, I plan to acquire a collection of Chinese beds: canopy or couch bed – doesn’t matter. I’m thinking a Chinese screen as well – and there will need to be a calligraphy painting to accent them, like one of these by local artist Simon Wong.
How many of us bought our dishes in Chinatown when we were students? My favourite was and remains the rice pattern chinaware with its translucent patterns and blue brushwork. Who hasn’t marveled at the intricate paper cuts, or wondered about the Scholars’ Rocks and wished that we could wear the sleek silk dresses with their clever knotted closures?
My personal collection includes a wedding basket, chopsticks, lots of calligraphy brushes and tea with a purple clay teapot to make it in. I once found a Chairman Mao cigarette case, much to the glee of a chain-smoking relative.
This book details it all.