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The Pearl Concubine

Oil on Canvas | 91.5cm x 152cm | The Cicada and the Plum series | A$8,400 | SOLD

Part of a series exploring the transition of a four thousand year old culture into the modern day era, Zhen Fei or the incorrectly named Pearl Concubine is a controversial figure in one of the last acts on the Imperial Chinese stage. It is a portrait of the real life Zhen Fei the favourite concubine of the Guangxu Emperor. Supposedly a beautiful young woman who possessed either an enlightened political wisdom or relentless narcissism and appetite for power - it depends on whose story one listens to, it is alleged that she was ordered to commit suicide by the Dowager Empress Cixi who is said to have been deeply annoyed by her behaviour.  Her death is unclear but a rumour exists that she was thrown down a well by the palace eunuchs on the orders of the Empress.

 

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