Demon-Queller Zhong Kui

    SKU: brimus194

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    About

    Legends about Zhong Kui the Demon-Queller trace his legacy back to the eighth century AD, when he appeared in an emperor’s dream to kill a troublesome demon harassing the ruler.1 Supplementary anecdotes expanded Zhong Kui’s reputation, and he is frequently the subject of Chinese paintings.2 Here Zhong Kui has a full beard and bulging eyes. The bud-shaped hat ties bobbing at each side of his head are supposedly ‘demon-detecting devices that point to unforeseen and lurking random dangers’.3 In popular prints Zhong Kui is usually depicted performing an exorcist’s dance. In this unusual print he has subdued a demon to carry a platter of gleaming jewels, branches of coral and elephant tusks, all symbols of wealth. Images of Zhong Kui could be posted at New Year’s to insure safety for the coming months, but were believed especially efficacious for dispelling evil at the time of Double Five, the fifth day of the fifth lunar month, marking the beginning of hot summer weather when a multitude of disasters, diseases and misfortunes might occur. The feather-like striations on Zhong Kui’s arms are common in eighteenth-century Suzhou prints, mostly indicating shadows on clothing in imitation of Western modelling.

    Specification

    Details: Demon-Queller Zhong Kui, woodblock print on paper, Qing dynasty, 18th century, Suzhou, China. (c) The Trustees of the British Museum

    Paper prints are framed with high grade Perspex (Plexiglas).

    Select from 2 materials: Fine art paper or Canvas.
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    Select from 6 frames: Black, Dark brown, Gold, Maple, White or Unframed.

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