Exquisite Chinese snuff bottles draw people from around the world

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Exquisite Chinese snuff bottles draw people from around the world

PORTLAND, Ore. – The International Chinese Snuff Bottle Society (ICSBS) will hold its 44th annual convention at the Nines Hotel in Portland from Oct. 16 – 20. Chinese snuff bottles were used during the Qing Dynasty, 1644-1912, to hold powdered tobacco to treat various illnesses. These highly variable, diminutive and sometimes intensely decorated bottles were often made of precious materials and became an important art form among the imperial elite. Their power to enthrall has continued to captivate people from around the world. 

“Lectures and snuff bottle exhibitions give us an opportunity to discuss the attributes of quality snuff bottles with fellow collectors, dealers and scholars. This dialog helps refine our judgment. These are the types of explorations that take place at the convention and they help us understand the history of the art form better and increase our appreciation for what these beautiful objects tell us about the world from which they came,” says Berthe Ford, president of the ICSBS.

The convention will feature a wide range of activities. Conference registration is $795.00 and new members are welcome. People are welcome to attend individual lectures or events by paying at the convention registration table at the Nines Hotel prior to the event. Saturday tours are only available to those who have registered for the entire conference. 

Oct. 16
Renowned scholar and author, Hugh Moss of London will lecture on the art of the snuff-bottle stopper at 5 p.m. at the Nines Hotel. The individual event price is $75.  

Oct. 17 
The convention will take an excursion to the Hallie Ford Museum of Art in Salem, to visit the exhibition “In the Palm of Your Hand: Chinese Snuff Bottles from Pacific Northwest Collections.” The exhibition was organized by Asian art scholar and collector John Gilmore Ford, and provides visitors with the rare opportunity to view 157 snuff bottles from 4 private collections.  At 4:15 p.m. art historian Kevin Greenwood will present the history, medium, subject matter and function of snuff bottles in the Qianlong court. The lecture will be held at the Paulus Lecture Hall at the Willamette University College of Law. Admission to the lecture is free and the Hallie Ford Museum of Art will extend its hours till 6:30 p.m., with free admission following the lecture. Single day registration with the convention is $265 and includes the full day of events as well as transportation to Salem and dinner at Wong's King Seafood Restaurant.  

Oct. 18
Donald Jenkins, curator emeritus at the Portland Art Museum, will explore the similarities between snuff bottles and classical Chinese gardens at 10:30 a.m. at the Nines Hotel. The individual event price is $75.  

Oct. 19 
Stuart Sargent, an independent scholar, will talk about the patrons, artists and individuals whose names appear on snuff bottles at 2 p.m. at the Nines Hotel. The individual event price is $75.  

Additional convention activities 
A traditional tea will be hosted by Christie’s Auction House. There will also be excursions to the Japanese Garden, the Lan Su Chinese Garden, the Bullseye Gallery and Glass Factory; and opportunities to view private collections. Dealers from around the world will also provide a unique opportunity to purchase snuff bottles at the convention.

“The study of Chinese snuff bottles can provide great insight into the larger world of Chinese art," said Erick Schiess, director of Jadestone Gallery in Portland. "They are a veritable microcosm. The dealer’s room at the convention is always an exciting place where collectors and connoisseurs can not only admire, but handle and purchase these precious objects. Specialists from around the world bring their finest examples, which are on par with almost any museum collection.” 

More information and registration forms are available at www.snuffbottle.org or by calling 410-467-9400.

About the International Chinese Snuff Bottle Society
The Chinese Snuff Bottle Society of America, was formed in 1968 to honor snuff bottle collectors and to publish scholarly articles about snuff bottles.  The name changed in 1974 to The International Chinese Snuff Bottle Society to reflect the society’s worldwide membership and conventions. The society now consists of over 500 collectors spread throughout the world. Members enjoy three scholarly journals per year and a dynamic convention. For more information visit www.snuffbottle.org.

About the Hallie Ford Museum of Art
The exhibition “In the Palm of Your Hand: Chinese Snuff Bottles from Pacific Northwest Collections” will be on display till Nov. 4.

The Hallie Ford Museum of Art is located at 700 State St. in Salem. Hours are Tuesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday from 1 to 5 p.m. The galleries are closed on Monday. General admission is $3 and $2 for seniors and students. Children younger than 12 are admitted free and admission is free on Tuesdays. For more information call 503-370-6855 or visit willamette.edu/arts/hfma.

High Resolution Photos for Media

Copyright Notice:

The following images posted on this page are for publicity purposes only, intended for use by journalists in media-related publications. Use of any image must be accompanied by its credit line. Use of these images by any other parties or for any other purposes, private or commercial, is strictly prohibited unless the express written consent is obtained directly from Hallie Ford Museum of Art. For information regarding educational, personal and commercial use of images, please visit our Copyrights & Reproductions page.

For assistance contact Andrea Foust 503-370-6867 or at afoust@willamette.edu.


Flattened ovoid-shaped snuff bottle with dragon

Flattened ovoid-shaped snuff bottle with dragon 
Chinese, Qing Dynasty (1644-1912), carved turquoise-glazed porcelain, on display at the Hallie Ford Museum of Art, private collection
To download: click on the image above to open the high resolution photo in a new window, then right-click and save.

Pebble-shaped snuff bottle with butterflies

Pebble-shaped snuff bottle with butterflies
Chinese, Qing Dynasty (1644-1912), carved amber, on display at the Hallie Ford Museum of Art, private collection
To download: click on the image above to open the high resolution photo in a new window, then right-click and save.

  

Interviews

Berthe Ford, president of the International Chinese Snuff Bottle Society; Erick Schiess, director of Jadestone Gallery in Portland; and John Olbrantz, director of the Hallie Ford Museum of Art are available for phone interviews. 
For assistance contact Andrea Foust 503-370-6867 or at afoust@wilmette.edu.