For those of us who live in the Western hemisphere of the globe, January’s conclusion signifies the end of the beginning of the New Year, but for those in the Eastern hemisphere, the annual calendar is still approaching its great rebirth. The Chinese New Year is a seasonal festival whose advent is marked by the arrival of the first new moon during the interim between January 21st and February 20th. Across Asia, this holiday is celebrated not only for its symbolic connotation with renewal and prosperity, but also for the spiritual, traditional lineage it reminds those observers of. It is indeed a beautiful practice, one whose influence and iconography have long inspired the artistic traditions of the West. Creatives throughout the Americas and Europe seem irrevocably drawn in particular to the animal icons which are associated with the Chinse Zodiac, a cycle of twelve years which itself constitutes a greater calendar within which the New Year’s celebrations reside. February 1st, 2022 in the Gregorian calendar will officially herald the Year of the Tiger – the third Chinese zodiac – and to celebrate, we are highlighting this wonderful crystal sculpture of a Sitting Tiger by the master crystal and glassworkers at Lalique.
The tiger has long been associated with bravery, ferocity, and stoic patience. This magnificent rendering by Lalique captures that essence perfectly, from the poised posture of the tiger – sitting pensively yet intensely – to the luxuriously gilded luster which imparts the association between prosperity and the traditional zodiac symbolism. Made of lead-imbued amber crystal, the sheer magnitude of craftsmanship is immediately evident in the tiger’s stripes, executed with crystalline clarity, which are juxtaposed against the opaqueness of the tiger’s body. There is perhaps no better piece to commemorate this new year.