The Offering by Esther Anna Hunt

The Offering by Esther Anna Hunt

The Offering

Esther Anna Hunt

Title

The Offering

 
Artist
Year
1903  
Technique
watercolor 
Image Size
18 5/16 x 12 3/8" image and paper 
Signature
signed Esther Hunt in pigment in lower right corner of image 
Edition Size
1 of 1 unique 
Annotations
in pigment above signature: copyright 1903, by 
Reference
 
Paper
textured wove watercolor 
State
 
Publisher
 
Inventory ID
PMJ321 
Price
$2,500.00 
Description

The narcissus flower is an auspicious symbol of the Chinese Lunar New Year, representing new life, prosperity, and good fortune. The Cantonese name shuixian hua means “water immortal flower”. At the turn of the century, as Chinese culture became more established in the American West, the annuals became known as “Chinese sacred lilies” and “joss flowers” to Westerners (likely referring to the joss paper used in many Chinese ceremonies). It is thought that these mediterranean plants were first introduced to China along the Silk Road or through sea trade sometime in the 9th century.

In this painting, California artist Esther Anna Hunt depicts a small child holding a stout planter full of the blossoming annuals, signifying the arrival of the Lunar New Year in San Francisco (where this image was painted). Such events were a major part of the lives of Chinese immigrant workers who had arrived during the Gold Rush and who brought their traditions with them by land and sea. The bulbs also became a symbol of hardiness and strength, as they were able to travel long distances through differing climates, yet still manage to produce elegant blooms in the dark of winter. Hunt inadvertently exposed much of the art collecting world to the daily lives of the Chinese families of California through her paintings.

 
Please call us at 707-546-7352 to purchase this item.