A Chinese red sandstone head of a smiling immortal.
16th to 17th century, late Ming Dynasty.
Height: 25 cm.
John J. Studzinski, CBE, London.
This brightly animated depiction of an immortal is carved with deep, undulating lines, giving him a rounded and jubilant expression.
The unusual red sandstone of the head most likely originates from northwest China, in the mountainous region across Shanxi and Shaanxi provinces. Playful humour is illustrated in the expressive elasticity of his face, with an infectious grin.