The rich blue and vivid turquoise colours on these figures are reminiscent of ‘Fahua ware’ figurines and pottery. Fahua ware refers to a colour palette used for decoration, which includes deep blue, turquoise, purple, yellow, and green.
Grave goods were an important status symbol in ancient China. A large number of attendants have been found in ancient Chinese tombs, indicating the need for assistance in the afterlife. As in life, attendant figures are depicted standing nearby, waiting to fulfil the desires of the deceased.
The Ming dynasty played host to some of China’s most renowned artistic achievements – famed, of course, for its vases, but also works such as Shen Zhou’s ‘Lofty Mount Lu’. The culture’s artistic explosion can be in part explained by the Ming dynasty’s economic success.
To discover more about Chinese terracotta statuettes, please visit our relevant collection page: Terracotta Tomb Attendants.