The motifs found on the decorative arts of China contain hidden auspicious meanings that convey wishes for the good things in life. In this conversation, scholars Terese Tse Bartholomew and Karl Debreczeny discuss the subtle humor and compassionate intentions embedded in the decoration of cloisonné objects, and their expression in both Chinese traditional designs, as well as Daoist and Tibetan Buddhist symbols.

Karl Debreczeny is a curator at the Rubin Museum of Art.

Terese Tse Bartholomew
is curator emeritus of Himalayan art and Chinese decorative arts at the Asian Art Museum of San Francisco.