Our Chinese Butterflies Motif uses imagery of butterflies from the Rare Book Collection of the American Museum of Natural History Library in NYC.
The artist(s) are anonymous and the artwork is a beautiful example of what is known as Chinese trade art. Chinese watercolors were painted in the port cities of Hong Kong, Macao and Canton and sold to Western customers in the mid-19th century. Many like the ones shown here, were printed on a type of paper unique to this genre called pith paper. One of the remarkable properties of pith paper is its ability to retain color vividly- and for a very long time, as you can see from our jewelry (shall we call this beautiful and pithy jewelry?).