China's classic repertoire of furniture forms is the widest and most highly refined within all the Asian cultures. The history of Chinese furniture dates back about 5,000 years ago through oracle bone pictographs, and wood working with advanced joinery techniques almost 7,000 years ago through Neolithic construction site discovery. The earliest surviving pieces of furniture from excavation of tombs were from the Shang Dynasty (16th-11th Century B.C.). By the Song Dynasty (960-1279A.D.), many of the most iconic forms and prototypes of Chinese furniture were already fully developed. These forms have undergone thousands of years of gentle evolution and constant refinement.

The collection we have put together for this exhibition includes many pieces that reflect what would be considered the most iconic forms.Constructed of indigenous woods which were either finished or covered in many layers of thick lacquer, they were also sometimes overlaid with another layer of decorative painting highlighted with gold.

Forms on display include tapered cabinets, scholar's-cap and horseshoe-back armchairs, recessed-leg altar tables, wine tables, stools and meditation seats,along with display pieces such as stands and display tables.

These elegant and refined pieces are often deceptively simple with their slim lines and sculptural forms.They work well in modern interior settings and demonstrate the true "form following function" in their design.