Flowers, Seasons & Symbolism
Summer and Fall through the Baur Collection
29 April 2003 - 30 June 2003
Flowers have often been a source of inspiration for Chinese and Japanese artists, guided by the rich symbolism which the natural world holds in both these cultures. Thus the lotus is an emblem of purity in Buddhism, while the chrysanthemum has been given poetic names, such as the “flower of ladies” or “golden heart” (a reference to the sun); it is a symbol of the 9th lunar month, and as a 16-petalled flower it is also the emblem of the Emperor of Japan. In this exhibition, a wide variety of Chinese and Japanese works of art, including netsuke, lacquer ware, ceramics, prints, sword fittings and jades, illustrate the summer and autumn seasons through these two flowers, reflecting the richness of the museum’s collections.