A beautiful Ming dynasty headrest displaying a vibrant two-coloured glaze in green and ochre. Beyond functional practices, headrests of this kind were fine pieces of decoration and could have been adorned with intricate designs, poems or philosophical quotes, each holding a symbolic meaning. This piece is modelled in a rectangular shape, with fluid curves to its angles. The inward-tilting top is sculpted with raised edges displaying foliage motifs, perhaps reminiscent of a lotus or peony flower, symbolic of fertility, purity, and continuity; pillows depicting such images were favoured wedding gifts. Simple linear and spiral motifs further decorate the top. The piece features a total of 14 vents across its body, which served to prevent possible destruction from the heat during the firing process. The vents on the glazed surface display more intricate designs, that of a Chinese cash coin motif created using an openwork technique, a symbol for wealth, good fortune and prosperity. The vent on the right side is slightly damaged, whilst the central and left one remain well-preserved.
Date: 1368-1644 AD