Scratched gold

John Spies

Mae Hong Son, Thailand

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Artist's Description

Detail on one of the gold-plated vats that were used to store rain water for extinguishing fires in the Forbidden City in Beijing, China. Built of all-wood and lit by oil lamps, the buildings often fell victim to destructive conflagrations. The scrape marks are left by the Allied Forces of the Eight Powers when they occupied Beijing post-Qing dynasty; the “barbarians” of the west proceeded to plunder all the riches of the middle kingdom’s capital, including using their bayonets to scratch the plated gold off the urns, some of which were coated with 2.2 kgs of gold plate.

Artwork Comments

  • Perspective
  • John Spies
  • pat gamwell
  • John Spies
  • Angie Muccillo
  • John Spies
desktop tablet-landscape content-width tablet-portrait workstream-4-across phone-landscape phone-portrait
desktop tablet-landscape content-width tablet-portrait workstream-4-across phone-landscape phone-portrait

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