Ritual wine container (Hu)

Historical period(s)
Eastern Zhou dynasty, 5th century BCE
Medium
Bronze Cast
Dimensions
H x W x D (overall): 46.7 x 32.1 x 31.5 cm (18 3/8 x 12 5/8 x 12 3/8 in)
Geography
China
Credit Line
Gift of Arthur M. Sackler
Collection
Arthur M. Sackler Gallery
Accession Number
S1987.11
On View Location
Currently not on view
Classification(s)
Metalwork, Vessel
Type

Ritual vessel: hu

Keywords
casting, China, Eastern Zhou dynasty (770 - 221 BCE), wine, WWII-era provenance
Provenance

From at least 1940 to 1948
C. T. Loo & Company, New York, NY [1]

1948 to 1953
C. T. Loo, INC., New York, NY by transfer from C. T. Loo & Company, NY [2]

1953 to 1961
C. T. Loo Chinese Art, New York, NY by transfer from C. T. Loo, INC, NY [3]

1961 to 1966
C. T. Loo & Cie., Paris, France by transfer from C. T. Loo Chinese Art, NY [4]

1966 to 1968
Jen Chai Art Gallery INC., New York, NY, purchased from C. T. Loo & Cie. on January 20, 1966 [5]

1968 to 1972
J. T. Tai & Company, INC, New York, NY, purchased from Jen Chai Art Gallery INC. on December 31,1968 [6]

1972 to 1987
Arthur M. Sackler, New York, NY purchased from J. T. Tai & Company in September 1972 [7]

From 1987
Arthur M. Sackler Gallery, Washington, D.C., gift of Arthur M. Sackler [8]

Notes:

[1] Published in C. T. Loo & Co., Exhibition of Ancient Chinese Ritual Bronzes, The Detroit Institute of Arts (Detroit, Michigan) 18 October to 10 November 1940, cat. 44 (illustrated).

[2] In 1948, when C. T. Loo & Company lost direct access to trade in China, C. T. Loo formed the company C. T. Loo, INC. In 1950, C. T. Loo announced his retirement. Loo appointed his daughter, Janie Emanuel Loo as the head of the Paris branch of C. T. Loo & Company (C. T. Loo & Cie) and his associate, Frank Caro, as the head of the New York Branch, which operated as C. T. Loo Chinese Art. C. T. Loo, INC. was dissolved by the summer of 1953.

[3] See note 2. On September 1, 1952, C. T. Loo’s associate, Frank Caro (1904-1980) took over daily operations of the New York business. C. T. Loo, INC. was dissolved by the summer of 1953 and Caro operated as C. T. Loo Chinese Art. Loo continued to play a large role in the business, as he and Caro struck a deal in which profits made on Loo’s stock would be evenly divided and Loo would maintain the lease and rental payments on the company’s gallery space. When Caro assumed leadership, he re-inventoried the gallery stock, assigning new numbers, many of which began with “E.” This object was part of that inventory process; E 5003.

[4] In 1961, Loo and Caro’s agreement ended. C. T. Loo & Cie., Paris, France took control of C. T. Loo Chinese Art, New York stock, which C. T. Loo added to the inventory before his death in 1957. See also note 5.

[5] See Jen Chai Art Gallery, INC. stock record, A 416. The inventory sheet reports that Jen Chai Art Gallery INC. purchased the bronze “HU” from C. T. Loo & Cie. as E 5003 on January 20, 1966. The object was imported from Paris on May 9, 1966. Copy in object file.

Jen Chai Art Gallery, INC. was owned and operated by J. T. Tai, who also operated J. T. Tai & Company.

[6] See Jen Chai Art Gallery, INC. stock record A 416; Ms. Y.C. Chen, J. T. Tai’s former secretary, confirmed that Jen Chai Art Gallery sold to J. T. Tai & Company before Tai would make sale. The stock record indicates that A 416 was part of the Jen Chai Art Gallery from 1966 through 1967.

[7] See notation on Jen Chai Art Gallery, INC. stock record A 416 and inventory prepared by J. T. Tai & Company, INC. of objects delivered to the Sackler Collection at the Metropolitan Museum of Art on 14 September 1972, copy located in accession file.
[8] Pursuant to the agreement between Arthur M. Sackler and the Smithsonian Institution, dated July 28, 1982, legal title of the donated objects was transferred to the Arthur M. Sackler Gallery on September 11, 1987.

Previous Owner(s)

Dr. Arthur M. Sackler 1913-1987
C.T. Loo & Company 1914-1948
C.T. Loo, INC. ca. 1948-no later than July 1953
J.T. Tai & Co. established in 1950
C.T. Loo & Cie, Art Ancien de Chine ca. 1950-2011
C.T. Loo Chinese Art 1953 - 1961

Published References
  • Exhibition of Chinese Arts, Special Sale. Exh. cat. New York, 1941-1942. no. 70.
  • Detroit Institute of Arts. An Exhibition of Ancient Chinese Ritual Bronzes. Exh. cat. New York. no. 44.
  • Xi Mengcao. Haiwai guizhen teji: Zhongguo qiqi [Chinese Treasures Overseas, a special collection at the Arthur M. Sackler Gallery]. no. 71, July 1991. pp. 58 -74.
  • et al. Asian Art in the Arthur M. Sackler Gallery: The Inaugural Gift. Washington, 1987. cat. 153b, pp. 230-231.
  • Jenny F. So. Eastern Zhou Ritual Bronzes from the Arthur M. Sackler Collections. Ancient Chinese Bronzes from the Arthur M. Sackler Collections, vol. 3 New York, 1995. cat. 42, pp. 248-251.
Collection Area(s)
Chinese Art
Web Resources
Google Cultural Institute
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