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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 NumberCollectionDate Made/FoundTimes Viewed
Bracelet2007.298 Ivories 5465
Bracelet2007.299 Ivories 4655
Brush2007.338 Ivories 4583
Brush holder2007.259 Ivories 4679
Brush holder2007.262 Ivories 4726
Brush holder2007.320 Ivories 1700s-1800s4480
Brush holder2007.321 Ivories Around 18624874
Brush holder2007.322 Ivories 1800s4655
Brush holder2007.323 Ivories 4397
Brush holder2007.324 Ivories 4275
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