Ca. late 1600s
This shallow, square tray-shaped dish is covered in black lacquer and inlaid with delicate abalone mother of pearl work, with touches of red, brown and gold lacquer. A central landscape scene of rocks, plants and butterflies is set in a black cartouche thinly framed with mother of pearl. The rest of the background and interior sides are sprinkled with fine abalone shell dust which gives this dish a blue-green sparkle. Mother of pearl butterflies and flower blossoms fill the area outside the cartouche, and around the perimeter o the interior base is painted a key-fret border in gold lacquer. The sides flare outward with slight bad wing corners and are rimmed with silver. One corner appears to have some old restoration. There are some small pearl losses in places on several of the butterflies. The back is lacquered black and the base is raised on four very low feet. There are some old but stable age cracks visible on the back.
Diameter: 4 ¼ in. square, Height: ½ in.