Summer is upon us in the temperate climes of the northern hemisphere. For many people, summer time is vacation time, but here at Lotus & Persimmon, summer time is peak time.
To get us in the mood, here's a lotus blossom in a pond at Seonyudo, a park created from the site of an old sewage treatment plant in Seoul.
I'm pleased to announce that the retail side of this site is almost ready to launch. D-day is 5 July, Canadian customs regulations precluding any official sales until 4 July. You'll be able to browse and purchase antique, vintage, and new Asian art artifacts here, but also in the soon-to-be-opened Ebay and Etsy storefronts, not to mention the L&P Facebook page. If you click around the site now, you'll see numerous products already listed, but the prices will remain hidden until 5 July. Only about a third of the products are currently listed, which means many more will appear in the coming months.
Of course, the products that are currently listed have been visible for over a year. The one that's generated the most interest is a miniature brass replica of the glorious Shwedagon stupa in Yangon. I purchased it on-site at the temple on my trip to Myanmar back in 2012. Scroll down to the bottom of your screen to see it in the 'Related Product' ad. I've received a number of inquiries about it and it's already set aside for a customer in California. If he should decide not to buy it after all, I'll be sure to let you know!
Regular readers will be aware that the 15-part serialization of my translation from the French of Charles Dallet's 1874 description/ethnography of Old Korea on this blog concluded at the end of May. I'm pleased to say it generated considerable interest, which I know because the average number of daily visitors to the site more than quadrupled over the 15 weeks that the instalments appeared. I'd like to thank everyone who read them. I haven't yet given up hope of finding a traditional publisher for this work, but in the meantime all 15 sections will remain free to read on this site.
If you enjoyed Dallet's description of Old Korea, you'll be glad to know that another serialization is in the works. Later this year, probably in the autumn, I will start translating a substantial monograph, a short book, really. It's called simply 'Korea' ('La Corée') and it was published by the French Geographical Society in the 1880s. I purchased an original copy from a dealer in Insa-dong in 2015.
As of 5 July, the nature of the blog posts will shift to focus on products for sale. Between now and then, however, I'm planning a series of posts about the treasures of the East Asia galleries in the National Museum of World Cultures in Mexico City, which I visited in May. I already published a post about a striking Chinese screen that I saw there.
Please check back regularly for updates. If you follow the L&P Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/lotusandpersimmon/), you'll get updates automatically. You can also keep up with developments by following on Instagram (@lotusandpersimmon).