"Extremely Rare Jade Of The "master Of The Cleveland Museum Buffalo""In the complex and varied corpus of jade carvings that represent the classic theme of the water buffalo, carried out between the late Ming and Qing dynasties, a special place must be reserved for the magnificent pale celadon nephrite specimen preserved at Cleveland Museum of Art, donated by John Lyon Collyer in memory of mother GMG Forman, accession number 1960.282. While taking into account the difficulties in attributing this masterpiece of Chinese glittic at a precise time, the curators of the aforementioned museum institution decided to attribute it generically to the Qing period (1644-1912), although multiple stylistic and technical elements convey in the orientation of possible dating, with the greatest probability, towards the 18th century. The sculpture on the exam has rather exclusive features in the panorama of this typology of works, especially because of the wide use of engraved lines that emphasize the sides of the jaw and, absolutely unique and distinctive, focus on the sinuous form of the ample fold of skin which profiles the front of the neck. The overall stylization given by the author to this work, either for the composite and balanced pose, or for the ability to cut volumes in a very personal way, as for the adoption of rare details (the indication already mentioned above) the leather fold which underlines the neck, or the definition of the horns forming an almost complete circle, totally adherent to the head of the animal, underlined also by a "star-shaped" pattern in the central part of the skull), that especially because of the use of unique and exclusive details (eg the lines engraved on the front side of the neck), certainly allows to attribute its paternity to a specific artist, possibly assisted by a workshop, whose we don't know neither the name nor the exact period of activity, but who can be defined, by convention, as the "Master of the Cleveland Museum jade buffalo" and who, almost certainly, has made his masterpieces 18th century. To this master, whose artistic coordinates remain quite clear and well perceptible, must be attributed the dark nephrite jade buffalo that we present in a world preview in our photo n. 1. This sublime realization shows, compared to the example of the Cleveland Museum, a character perhaps even more archaistic, thanks to the use of a nephrite jade with dark tones, which turn from an intense brown, greenish, gray, pure white, with many shades, crossed by veins of contrasting color, according to a taste certainly more in line with a work of the Ming or early Qing period. But it just take a look at the work of the Cleveland Museum, presented here as photo n. 2 (courtesy of the Cleveland Museum of Art, all rights reserved), to highlight an almost total stylistic and executive correspondence between our jade and that of the museum institution of which it has been said, with variants that appear quite minimal compared to the total artistic and technical conformity of the two sculptures. China, Qing Era, 18th century. Long. cm. 18 approx.