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High Position and Great Wealth

Tags: blessing | print

This set of decorative paintings for doors is made up of two halves. The noble officials in the paintings both wear traditional official hats and hold ivory tablets in their hands. The one on the right carries a flower pot, which bears the Chinese characters ronghua (high position), with his right hand; while the official on the left carries the pot, which says fugui (great wealth), with his left hand. The two expressions together constitute the traditional phrase for blessing, ronghua fugui (high position and great wealth). Additionally, the two children in the paintings hold fans that read zhao cai jin bao (bring in wealth and treasure) and yan nian fu gui (longevity and wealth), respectively. These noble officials are fictional figures who manifest wishes and yearning of ordinary people for high position and great wealth. However, China also uphold Laozi and Zhuangzi’s ideology as in "satisfied with what one has, indifferent to fame and wealth" and Laozi’s philosophy of life “misfortune is the basis of fortune; fortune is the cause of misfortune” (fortune and misfortune are two buckets in a well).


51.5 x63.5 cm

National Museum of History