A finely sculpted terracotta Tang court lady presented seated in a relaxed and elegant stance upon a large, rounded stool. The lady displays characteristics of what was thought as the ideal beauty during the Tang Dynasty. She is portrayed wearing a long robe known as a Qixiong Ruqun (齐胸襦裙, a garment including a skirt with the waistband above the breast and an upper garment stuck inside), a symbolic clothing style during the Tang Dynasty. The garment falls to her feet with detailed pleats showing the folds in the loose fabric. It is embellished with the colours blue, yellow, green, and red which are still visible to the surface. The lady’s hair is gathered into Cong Ji (丛髻, the cluster coiffure), which was popular in the mid to late Tang Dynasty. Her full cheeks are painted with a light rouge-coloured pigment, and her lips in bright red. She holds a circular object, with an incised ring, painted in red pigment in her right hand. The hand has been repaired at the wrist and at the joining of the object to the hand. The left hand is raised in an elegant gesture next to the other. The figure’s shoes, Gaotou Lv (翘头履, the shoes with the heads standing), was another popular style in Tang Dynasty among both women and men, and would help prevent stepping on long garments. The heads of these shoes are decorated with floral patterns.
Date: Circa AD 618 – 907
Period: Tang Dynasty