Laughing Buddha Sculpture
This early 20th-century Chinese-crafted Laughing Buddha sculpture has a hollow centre and is crafted entirely out of porcelain. The piece is coated in a glaze which is applied through a heating process wherein the glaze is stained to the porcelain, leaving a glossy finish. Light shades of blues, yellows, and pinks dominate the colourful floral dress worn by the Buddha. The figure’s open mouth underlines his jovial mood. The Laughing Buddha is considered to be a symbol of happiness, abundance, contentment, and wellbeing. He enjoys helping others, dedicating his life to the enlightenment of all beings. It is believed that if one rubs the belly of the Buddha, luck and wealth shall follow. Since Laughing Buddha statues are considered auspicious, they are often kept in homes, offices, hotels, and restaurants, as motifs for positive energy and good luck. Laughing Buddhas come in all shapes and sizes, and this brightly coloured version would be a playful piece to add to any space or collection.
At this time in China, the first book written entirely in Vernacular Chinese, Lu Xun’s (1881–1936) novella, The True Story of Ah Q, was published in 1922. Originally released as an episodic serial in the Beijing Morning News, the piece is considered a masterpiece of modern Chinese literature. Lu Xun’s story traces the adventures of rural peasant Ah Q, who has little education and no definite career. Focusing on a protagonist from a lower social status was also new in Chinese literature at the time, making Lu Xun’s text groundbreaking in more ways than one.