A finely done representation of Guanyin, Chinese goddess of mercy and compassion, this figure is carved of hwa yong, a slow-growing hardwood. The carving was coated first with red lacquer, which was then covered over in most areas with dark brown lacquer. The red color was retained to define the inner folds of the robe and to focus attention on the delicately carved hands and feet. Over time, the brown lacquer has worn thin in other areas allowing the red to show through and creating a pleasing patina. The bodhisattva is holding ling zhi, the herb (sometimes called a mushroom) of eternal youth. Her face is long and classic, and she wears the traditional jewelry and head piece of the goddess. The mid 18th century figure is in perfect condition. Height 15" (38 cm), diameter at base 5" (12 cm).