Collecting Masterpieces
Photo of tang-fat-lady-china

 

Archaic and Imperial Chinat
COURT LADY
Tang Dynasty (AD 618 ­- 906)

 

Object :
Nº 658
Medium :
Terracotta
Dimensions :
Height: 44 cm (17.3") – Width: 18 cm (7")

Lady of the court in moulded, fine clay terracotta covered in a light slip with polychrome traces. Her face has fine features lost in a mass of rouged flesh and her hair is in a high chignon called “half wy back”. Her dress is ample with deeply incised folds; over it she wears a tight-fitting bustier with a low neckline and short sleeves called banbi. She is slightly swaying, arms folded and the hands hidden by the long sleeves of the dress. Her long dress, flaring near the bottom, reveals pointed shoes with the tip curved up, very fashionable at court during the last quarter of the 7th century.

The emperor Xuanzong ( 712-756 AD) had as his favourite a buxom woman. At that time feminine images of this type started to multiply. The Tangs idealized voluptuous women, highlighting their well-developed curves. The dress adds to this aesthetic, mostly generous, it is of a Hufu type, of “barbarian” origins and coming from the western borders of the Silk Road.