Ming dynasty furniture goes on sale in HK

Sotheby’s’ gallery in Hong Kong showcases rare treasures from Dr S Y Yip’s Ming-era collection.

For avid collectors of Chinese antiquities, Sotheby's' display of Dr S Y Yip’s Ming-era compilation on August 14 to September 4 offers an extraordinary opportunity to preview and learn about one of China’s greatest historical crafts.

Ming dynasty furniture was made possible by imports of precious timber from Southeast Asia, featuring now-extinct hardwoods from trees such as the huanghuali and zitan.

Prized for their toughness, high strength, beautiful colour, and fine grain, these hardwoods allowed craftsmen to create very complicated and ingenious joints using the mortis and tendon method. Metal nails are never used and glue is always secondary to the joinery, if used at all.

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