These two dancers were made from square section moulds derived from Sui models. The resurgence of this glass-like technique is probably due to the potters of the Bei Qi of Henan. Few works from the late 6th century and first half of the 7th century use lead glazes.
Made in a fine white earth coated with an ivory glaze that has peeled in places, they extend a technique developed under the Sui. Silhouettes, physiognomies and hairstyles are part of the same ideal of beauty inherent in the creations of the mid-7th century. The hair is collected on the top of the skull like the wings of a butterfly. The oval of the face is placed on a teenage girl's body. The moulded bolero highlights the inclined bust with its delicate shape. The slender waist, supple loins, legs in flexion mimic a dance step.
Although many of the arias of this era remain well known, it does not seem possible to make them coincide with any choreography. At most, it can be inferred from this that melodious attitudes belong more to the ruan style of Chinese tradition than to the much more whirling jian of western dances. Foreign inputs have been assimilated, but the way of moving close to the ground could come from India.
Much of the performer's talent probably lay in his way of gliding without apparent gravity, held above things by the twirling fabric of his sleeves.
Reproduction in patinated resin
Height: 17 cm.
Width: 25 cm.
Depth: 20 cm
Weight: 1 kg
Origin: Jacques Polain Collection
Period: Tang, half of the 7th century, northern China
Museum: Paris - Museum of Asian Arts-Guimet