EMI 01 A pair of straw-glazed pottery figures of female musicians


Sui dynasty (581-618)

The figures are seated in kneeling position, wearing long robes and with the hair dressed in an asymmetric bun held at the back by a single-winged ‘butterfly’-headdress. One is playing a pai xiao, the other is playing a sheng. The figures are covered with a rich pale yellow glaze.

18 cm high

These female figures of musiciens show the popularity of the music and instruments of Central Asia, particularly Sogdiana and Kuch. Also the foreign dress was in high fashion during this period, and was probably introduced by the Turkic wife of Emperor Wudi (r. 561-78)

 Provenance: Formerly in a Belgian private collection


Ceramics > Early Ceramics