Oblong folio, 1 leaf typescript introduction on My Treasure Box headed paper + 15 card leaves of manuscript including title-page, accompanying 56 gelatin silver prints, ranging from approximately 3 x 3 inches to 4¼ x 3 inches (7 x 7 cm. to 11 x 7 cm.) or the reverse, each numbered and described in white on brown album leaves, with tissue guards; business card of Iskandrian-Hupeden tipped in on title-page; in navy cloth-covered boards with dragon design embossed on upper cover, titled in gilt on upper cover, pocket labelled ‘Address Cards’ (containing six of Hupeden’s cards) on front pastedown.
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[Cover title:] ‘My Treasure Box’ [Title-page:] ‘Some selected objects of Chinese Arts at present on Sale. We solicit enquiries…’.
A charming and insightful trade catalogue compiled by a female Chinese arts dealer, covering porcelains, cast bronzes and irons, stone and wood sculpture, lacquered figures, furniture and screens, pottery and embroidery. The colours and dimensions are often described in the text, and the final page lists the dates of Chinese dynasties from 1122 BC and the reigns within the final Ching (Qing) dynasty.
The introductory typescript text advises customers ‘All our objects are guaranteed to authentically belong to the period or reign indicated! Our prices are very moderate, fixed on our buying prices in local Dollars, which, in present circumstances in this country, are EXTREMELY FAVOURABLE to buyers, and we are thus giving our patrons the full benefit of favourable purchases at prices very considerably below the standard prices for such objects ruling in Europe and America…’
The business card which is featured on the manuscript ‘title-page’ indicates that My Treasure Box was situated in the Grosvenor Arcade, Shanghai. Though we have not found full biographical details of A. Hupeden, a Hupeden is referenced in China importers and exporters directory (Bureau of Foreign Trade, Ministry of Industry, 1936), and Miss A.M. Hupeden is listed in the Journal of the North-China Branch of the Royal Asiatic Society for 1938/9 (Vol 69), which seems likely to be the Mme. A. Iskandrian-Hupeden quoted on the business card.
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