Mongolian Cabinets

mongolian-cabinetThese painted wood cabinets may rank at the top of my all-time favorites list. Like other pieces that have to do with food storage or preparation, these pieces have a wonderful energy and bring warmth, color and beauty to any setting.

Their consistently simple box form is the backdrop for an endless variety of colors and styles of painting that were done on the front (and sometimes back) panels of these old grain storage bins.

The carefully selected pieces that we show in the Collection, were foundon my trip to Northern China last year.They range from 75 to 175 years old, and are comprised of one to six painted panels, all with original paint.They are all Mongolian, though many were collected in the current Gansu Province.Originally, part or all of the top of the cabinet would lift off to access the contents, though most have been modified to be more useful in our homes by using the original panels as doors or drawer fronts.

Much of the beauty of these pieces lies in the expressive country primitive painting on these panels and the patina, accumulated through decades of wear from daily use in Mongolian homes.


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Having journeyed to the Far East and Asia over 20 times in the past 20 years, I’ve been intrigued and inspired by the ingenuity, craftsmanship, balance and human spirit that have gone into the making of those works I have seen and collected.

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