Sunday, January 26, 2014

Puzzling Evidence - The "Lotus" Clasp is Probably a Morning Glory

In a prior post I discussed a style of cloisonne box clasp with a mysterious flower design that, for want of a better idea, I named the "Lotus Clasp."

This just goes to show the hazards of being unfamiliar with artistic iconography from another part of the world, as an online auction recently listed  one of these clasps as a "morning glory."
Duh!  Of course!  

It seems to be an especial favorite of Japanese artists, whose rendering seems more typically to match that of the clasp - here's an example of a set of lovely Fitz and Floyd plates featuring the morning glory motif:
Courtesy of eBay vendor maggie-magnolia
Notice the little vine tendril - after wondering what that little brown worm-like thing on the cloisonne clasp could be, now I know.

The clasp typically seems to be a machine-stamped design, but here's an example featuring an actual hand-wired cloisonne box clasp:
Sold on eBay for $15 by eBay vendor vickysdesign917who offers many other nice things at what seem like similarly affordable prices.
For comparison purposes, here are examples of cloisonne morning glories in Chinese and Japanese work:


Could this clasp design possibly be of Japanese, rather than Chinese, inspiration?
Puzzling evidence...

Update - Chinese morning glories with JingFa clouds in a very pretty design:
Courtesy of eBay vendor spikesstuff44

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