Goldfish set to make a splash at Forbidden City century later

Updated: Aug 6, 2019 By Wang Kaihao China Daily Print
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An exhibition of goldfish-themed artifacts is now on display at the Palace Museum. [Photo by Jiang Dong/China Daily]

During its peak, there were 279 varieties of goldfish kept at the Forbidden City.

The artifacts in the exhibition hall will help usher visitors back to that golden age. As well as the fish tanks used by the emperors, an array of porcelain ware, silk items, snuff bottles and numerous other exhibits bearing goldfish motifs demonstrate the influence of the goldfish aesthetic on the daily lives of people in the royal court.

A water container with four red-glazed fish from the reign of Kangxi (1662-1722) is just one of the highlights at the exhibition showcasing the elegance of the era.

And an exquisite lacquered stationary case from the reign of Daoguang (1821-50) inlaid with goldfish represents people's hopes for prosperity. It was made by Lu Kuisheng, a renowned craftsman from Yangzhou, Jiangsu province.

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