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Inside Painting

Inside painting in China is a unique traditional crafts, which originated from the painting of snuff bottle. In Ming Dynasty Wanli Period, snuff had been a popular present inChinasince Italian missionary Matteo Ricci brought snuff toChina. In Qing Dynasty Daoguang Period, the inside painting craft came into being. It involves glass bottles which have pictures and often calligraphy painted on the inside surface of the glass. The bottles are produced by manipulating a specialized paint brush through the neck of the bottle. Inside-painted bottles are associated with Chinese snuff bottles. 

    The earliest inside painted bottles are thought to have been made in the period between 1820 and 1830 as, by then, the beauty of a snuff bottle was probably more important than utilitarian considerations—-and considering this—few would have been used for holding snuff. To paint the inside of the bottle, the artist must paint backwards. The inner painting is drawn by a special deformed fine pen from the neck of the bottle, painting on glass, crystal, amber and other materials. The painting is nuanced freehand with elegant style and elaborate craft. Concentration  is  crucial  to  make  precise  strokes.  Inside  painting  snuff  bottle  is  praised  as “uncanny workmanship” at  home  and  abroad, because of  its  unique making technics and exquisite art verve. Inside painted snuff bottle is very small but very delicate, which has high collection value as well as art appreciation value.