Traditional Chinese furniture, whether looking at the entire piece or the individual parts, clearly embodies unique and profound Chinese craftmanship.
Even the smallest components deserve our exploration.
矮老[ǎi lǎo], pillar-shaped strut , the round or square shaped component of traditional Chinese furniture.
卡子花 [kǎ zǐ huā] Decorative struts are both a functional and a decorative component of furniture from the Ming and Qing Dynasties.
Evolved from pillar-shaped struts (矮老[ǎi lǎo]), they can be installed on doors, windows, tables, chairs, beds or other kinds of furniture with decorative design.
bird and flower
卡子花 [kǎ zǐ huā] Decorative struts function to support and balance the surrounding components as well as decorate the furniture.
卡子花 in a mortise structure (photo from internet)
They are combined with the adjacent parts by a connecting mortise-and-tenon structure or an iron nail, in accordance with its shape.
Craftsmen took great efforts to design decorative struts, which represent only a small piece of the entire furniture piece.
Nevertheless, auspicious meanings and a love for life were embedded in the various designs, such as geometric patterns, plants and animals, and human stories...
Furniture plays an indispensable role in our life and also serves as living functional craft pieces that combine both culture and art.
Those seemingly small, furniture components are actually quite unique in that they provide a pleasing aesthetic in their patterns and variations.
We invite you to view and appreciate hundreds or thousands of these small beautiful decorative furniture pieces during your next visit to Six Arts Museum.