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This collection of over 150 carved ivory objects was created by Dr John Grice, who worked in China between 1922 and 1956. The collection was purchased by Dr J G Graves for the City of Sheffield in the 1930s and was displayed in the Graves Art Gallery. It was originally seen as an educational resource for the many ivory carvers who worked in Sheffield’s metalwork trades.

’...the cutlery city of Sheffield; one of the very few places in the world today in which ivory carvers are in full time employment’

Preface to 1958 collection catalogue

The ivories, mostly made in the 1700s and 1800s, were often made as decorative pieces for European collectors. The collection includes calligraphy brush pots, decorative plaques and figures from history and myth that show the immense skill of the artists and craftsmen who made them. They have many stories to tell about Chinese culture and recent research into the collection has allowed us to fully understand their religious, social and historic context.

Show Objects
Name of ObjectAccession NumberCollectionSorted AscendingDate Made/FoundTimes Viewed
Carving with stand2007.281 Ivories 1800s920
Arm rest2007.286 Ivories 1800s65197
Plaque2007.295 Ivories 1800s916
Plaque2007.296 Ivories 1800s927
Figure2007.307 Ivories 1800s679
Figure2007.214 Ivories 1800s1428
Figure2007.215 Ivories 1800s564
Arm rest2007.217 Ivories 1800s41569
Vessel2007.310 Ivories 1800s4507
Vessel2007.312 Ivories 1800s10552
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