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antique vietnamese family altar

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Asian Antiques2611 of 5236My first Awaji potteryJapanese Yukuta/Kimono silk?
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Posted 2 years ago


(271 items)

This is a family heirloom from my grand parents who lived in Indochina from 1910 to 1956.
this cabinet-altar is very finely engraved and open carved both faces, 1.3 meters high, 1.5 meters wide. Medallions are bone, not ivory with dragons, characters and trigrams I can't read.
Top has a nearly iridescent feel with nice veining.
There was a pair, but the other was destroyed during the moving trip to settle in France :-(
Any help to decipher writing welcome!!!

Mystery Solved


  1. shrine shrine, 2 years ago
    kyratango -- what a coincidence, my friend just showed me this yesterday. His shelf is just a modern reproduction of yours, in other words, yours could be the original design. Very interesting story to tell my friend.

    However, I don't think your piece is an TRUE antique but a tributary antique. The mark you mentioned is a reign mark boasting being made around 1800. It's not possible to me according to the wear and patina on the furniture. My preliminary estimation sits in early 20c which matches your story.

    The quality of image is not enough identify the specific timber used, but roughly speaking, I think it's a vietnamese variation of chinese Qing furniture design made from local rosewood. It's a safe guess to me as most Chinese furniture maker sources their rosewood from Vietnam in 20c, till now.

  2. DrFluffy DrFluffy, 2 years ago
    It's stunning Kyra... And I love the story... How cool that you family lived in Asia during that period.
  3. kyratango kyratango, 2 years ago
    Thanks shrine and Drfluffy for your comments!
    I'll post old pics from 1930 of my grand parents interior.
    Of course, all of their deco was recent at the time!
  4. Manikin Manikin, 2 years ago
    Very beautiful !
  5. kyratango kyratango, 2 years ago
    Thanks Manikin!
  6. toracat toracat, 2 years ago
  7. kyratango kyratango, 2 years ago
    Thanks Don!
  8. Trey Trey, 2 years ago
    The detail in this is amazing.
  9. kyratango kyratango, 2 years ago
    Thanks Trey :-)
  10. shareurpassion shareurpassion, 2 years ago
    Stunning work of art!
  11. BHock45 BHock45, 2 years ago
  12. kyratango kyratango, 2 years ago
    Thank you shareurpassion and BHock45 for your kind comments :-)
  13. kyratango kyratango, 2 years ago
    Thanks Idcloisonne, I knew the yin/yang symbol, but not the signification of the trigramme around it (used in feng-shui, for auspicious too)
    There are several on the altar and none match what I found.
  14. kyratango kyratango, 2 years ago
    Thank you Kivatinitz :-)
  15. kyratango kyratango, 12 months ago
    Late thanks to the 31 lovers!
  16. kyratango kyratango, 9 months ago
    Thank you Roycroft and Ozmarty!

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