Royal Selangor introduces Koi, a brand new and unique accessory collection that celebrates the popular Amur Carp (Cyprinus rubrofuscus), native to East Asia. The coloured varieties of the Amur carp, believed to be auspicious, are most popularly kept as decorative pets in outdoor koi ponds or water gardens.
The word koi comes from the Japanese for carp 鯉. In Japanese, koi is a homophone for 恋, which means ‘affection’ or ‘love’. Koi is recognised as a symbol of love and friendship in Japanese culture.
Koi celebrates the wordplay in a pair of beloved phrases in the Chinese cultural sphere.
Yuán yuán bù jué = An endless source
The 源 yuán pronunciation matches that of round 圆 and currency 元.
Nián nián yǒu yú = A surplus every year
The 余 yú is a homophone of fish 鱼 yú, similar to that of abundance 裕 yù.
The circle, which is the unifying element across the collection, is designed in the form of a Möbius loop, symbolising infinity and suggesting auspicious flowing water. This is reflected as freestanding rings of the centrepiece and vase, rims to the wealth bowl, tray, hot water bath and wine jug, and the feet on the porcelain wine cups.
The collection has more instances of wordplay. 九鱼 jiǔyú, which means ‘nine fish’ has a similar pronunciation to 久余 jiǔyú and 久余 jiǔyù, which means ‘everlasting balance’ and ‘everlasting abundance’, respectively. Each item in the collection features nine koi, except for the wine cups and the tray.
The lively koi, sculpted swimming in unison, are each positioned deliberately to enhance the movement of light shifting across the rings’ sweeping planes.
The wooden element of the base is square, a combination which references the Chinese concept of 天圆地方 tiānyuán dìfāng, or ‘round heaven square earth’. It reflects the early belief of a flat square earth, surrounded by the celestial dome, but can also suggest all-encompassing harmony.
Koi’s contemporary treatment of the classic phrases transforms East Asian symbolism into unique accessories for any occasion.
A large circle decorated with nine 24K gilt pewter koi, on a square walnut-stained nyatoh base.
The collection is available for pre-order at Royal Selangor stores, authorised dealers, and online at royalselangor.com from 3 June 2022 onwards.