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An ovoid-shaped Chinese Ming period porcelain jar painted in rich blue around the sides with two five-clawed dragons among clouds and with rocks and waves below.  Round the shoulder a stylised shou (long life character) seems to grow out of the lotus

Extraordinary Chinese and Japanese Works of Art in the Royal Collection


Model of the Taitokuin Mausoleum 1909-10

RCIN 92903

This outstanding model is a one-tenth scale replica of the Taitokuin Mausoleum, which was dedicated to the Tokugawa shogun, Hidetada (1579–1632). It was made for display at the 1910 Japan-British Exhibition at White City, London, where millions of Londoners experienced their first taste of Japanese culture. The model was prepared while the actual Mausoleum still stood and was based on precise measurements and study of its architecture and decoration. The replica was be made using many of the same materials and techniques, including timber frame joinery by temple carpenters and gold and silver designs known as maki-e.

The original Mausoleum was constructed shortly after the Shogun's death in Edo (now Tokyo), but destroyed by war-time bombing in May 1945. Today, this astonishing work of art has been painstakingly restored by Japanese craftsmen and placed on loan in Tokyo, where it is on public display.