CMC S89-1724; PCD 94-684-022

1973; Seoul, Korea; painted and inlaid wood; 40.7 x 35.6 x 5.3 cm.
CMC 74-182

In attempting to understand the universe and the antagonistic forces within it, human beings have constructed systems of interpretation from which they draw the imagery and symbols that enrich their works. These symbols, perhaps used unconsciously by the artist, correspond to the universal principle of dualism and complementarity of the female and the male that we find in China in the notion of yin and yang.

The Korean So, a panpipe of Chinese origin, shows its yang aspect in the character of the phoenix, the fabulous bird whose wings give the instrument its shape, while its yin side, or the feminine principle, is portrayed by a fish in water.