Asian & Ethnographic
Chinese Yingshi Scholar's Rock or Spirit Stone Great Desk Piece
Chinese Yingshi Scholar’s Rock or “Gonghsi,” mounted on an early 20th century carved rosewood stand.
Height of rock: 8 1/2 inches, overall dimensions: 11 × 4 3/4 × 2 3/4 inches.
Note: In China, the pure beauty of nature has been treasured for centuries, and this is most evident in the appreciation and collecting of highly unusual rocks called Gongshi. Spirit Stones, as they are also called, are naturally occurring rocks found in nature that have a certain aesthetic appeal that can be either abstract or representational. Their use in meditation and reflection dates back 1,000 years to the Song dynasty. Ultimately, Gongshi became so deeply valued they were presented as tribute objects to powerful people in China and the rest of Asia. Sadly, during the cultural revolution of the 20th century, many of these objects were destroyed or lost. Few retain their original Huanghuali stands.