Incense Tray with Three Friends of Winter
- Chikusen, Japan
Mediumlacquer on bamboo
Credit LineLutz Bamboo Collection, gift of China Chow, Maximilian Chow, and Malu Byrne
Chikusen (Japan). Incense Tray with Three Friends of Winter. 20th century. lacquer on bamboo. Lutz Bamboo Collection, gift of China Chow, Maximilian Chow, and Malu Byrne. 2009.728.
Dimensionsdiameter: 13 in, 33.0200 cm; height: 1.5 in, 3.8100 cm
InscriptionSigned in the base, "Chikusen," signed wood box and with seal.
DepartmentArts of Asia
CollectionArts of Asia
Incense Tray with Three Friends of Winter Signed: Chikusen Japan mid-1900s, Showa period Bamboo and lacquer Lutz Bamboo Collection, gift of Tina Chow Maximillian Chow, and Malu Byrne 2009.728 In Japan, the trio of pine, bamboo, and plum is called the Three Friends of Winter (sho· chiku·bai). Pine (sho) is a symbol of longevity, bamboo (chiku) is strong and resilient, and plum (bai) is the first tree to bloom after the cold winter. The three are associated with the New Year, and a bamboo tray in the shape of a plum blossom with gold-lacquer pine needles is used to display incense utensils on New Years Day or other celebratory occasions.
Known ProvenanceAt least 1971, Takashimaya, Tokyo; 1971-2009, Lutz Bamboo Collection; 2009, DAM collection, gift of Tina Chow, Maximillian Chow, and Malu Byrne.