Welcome to the Chinese-art.com Traditional Art e-bulletin, distributed monthly to scholars, professionals, and aficionados of Chinese art. Please e-mail suggestions, news, and announcements to editor@chinese-art.com.


Exhibitions Conferences, Symposia, Lectures

contents

NEWS FROM CHINESE-ART.COM

 
ARCHAEOLOGICAL FINDS
NOTEWORTHY ESSAYS

EXHIBITIONS & MUSEUM NEWS

Readers may wish to view a calendar listing all June 2000 to May 2001 exhibitions reported in this and previous e-bulletins.

[past & ongoing]

[upcoming]

[museum news]

AUCTION & MARKET NEWS

Older auction results are posted in previous e-bulletins:
19 May 2000
23 June 2000
31 August 2000

30 September 2000
31 October 2000

30 November 2000

[recent]

[upcoming]

[market news]

CONFERENCES, SYMPOSIA, LECTURES

Readers may wish to view a calendar listing all June 2000 to May 2001 conferences and symposia reported in this and previous e-bulletins.

[recent]

[upcoming]

NEW BOOKS AVAILABLE FROM CHINESE-ARTBOOKS.COM

NEWS FROM CHINESE-ART.COM

Traditional Chinese Art Magazine

Don't miss our latest issue (volume 2, issue 3) of the Chinese-art.com Traditional Magazine, featuring a tribute to the exhibition Taoism and the Arts of China at the Art Institute of Chicago. This ground-breaking exhibition covers the artistic achievements of Daoism as seen in painting, calligraphy, sculpture, ritual implements, textiles, and rare books. In conjunction with the Art Institute's two-day symposium, this issue contains an essay on "The Origins of Daoist Art," in which Wang Yi'e, arguably the only expert on Daoist painting in China, summarizes early Daoist iconography. A separate picture gallery introduces the little-known but unsurpassed collection of Daoist painting and sculpture at the White Cloud Temple in Beijing, where Wang Yi'e and the Daoist Association of China are based. In "An Outline of Daoist Art," Liu Jianlong confronts the question, "What is Daoist art?." We also offer "How Do We Come to Terms with Folk Religions from Feudal Times?" excerpted from a seminal work in the field of religious studies, History of Folk Religion in China, by Ma Xisha and Han Bingfang. Lennert Gesterkamp, a Dutch scholar of Daoist art in China, provides a review of the Taoism exhibition, which reopens at the Asian Art Museum, San Francisco, in February.

Our staff is currently compiling a comprehensive list with links to Museums, Galleries, and Booksellers relating to Chinese art. Please contact editor@chinese-art.com if you wish to have your institution, gallery, or bookseller listed.

Contemporary Chinese Art Magazine

The latest issue (volume 3, issue 6) of the Chinese-art.com Contemporary Magazine presents unparalleled coverage of the 2000 Shanghai Biennale, including an interview with Hou Hanru by guest editor Zhu Qi, and points of view on the Biennale by Zhu Qi, Li Xu, Zhang Zhaohui, Wang Nanming, David Barrett, and Hank Bull. Correspondents Francesca Jordan and Regi Prewerk each offer two reports covering both the Biennale and the myriad satellite exhibitions.

Chinese Art at the End of the Millennium

Chinese Art at the End of the Millennium, a compilation of the essays and works that have appeared in Chinese-art.com in 1998 and 1999, is now available in paperback! The book is edited by John Clark, Professor of Art History, University of Sydney. To order at US$28, visit http://www.chinese-artbooks.com!

Chinese-art.com is looking for news correspondents

Chinese-art.com is looking for native English speakers to translate Chinese texts into English. If you think you have what it takes to translate classical texts, please send us an email with experience and rates. Email to editor@chinese-art.com.

Print Copies of Chinese-art.com Publications

Too busy to browse? New Art Media Limited (HK) offers paperbound, printed copies of Chinese-art.com web publications on a paid subscription basis.

Chinese-artbooks.com

Our on-line bookstore, Chinese-artbooks.com, offers a careful selection of English and Chinese publications on traditional and contemporary art. For a sampling of new books available on traditional Chinese art, please see our New Books section below.

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ARCHAEOLOGICAL FINDS

Large Wooden Boat Coffins Found in Chengdu

In July 2000, on Shishangye street in Chengdu, Sichuan province, archaeologists uncovered a massive site of wooden boat coffins in the royal burial ground of the Kingdom of Shu, which can be dated from 3,000 to 5,000 years ago. These particular boat-coffin finds have been dated to the middle to late Ming Wang Dynasty, existent during the Warring States period (475-221 BC). This discovery led to a three-month excavation, revealing startling remains, the first of their kind to be found in Sichuan. The grounds covered approximately 1500 square meters, and the artifacts were stratified into a variety of complex layers, representing a number of historical periods. The site faced northeast toward southwest, and the burial pits were rectangular in shape, 31 m long and 21 m wide. Due to the looting which occurred during the Han Dynasty (206 BC - AD 220), archaeologists were only able to recover 17 of the more than 30 original boat burials. Of these coffins, 4 were extremely large, with the largest measuring 18.8 m and others at 10 m and 2 m in height. In some cases, these larger coffins and burials were accompanied by smaller wooden burials of sacrificed humans and burial goods accompanying the deceased. Archaeologists located evidence of pillars and other support structures within the two level burials and, overall, the preservation of the coffins at the site was quite high. In fact in the bottom of the pits, under many of the burials at the site, wooden support blocks and planks were discovered, fifteen in all. In addition, excavators found planks covering each of the tombs. The foundations provide evidence that this site was originally covered with architecture, perhaps temples relating to ancestral worship and sacrifice. Hundreds of cultural artifacts also accompanied the burials, such as pottery, lacquer, bamboo utensils and a few bronzes. The high level of firing quality and preservation of these pieces is particularly evident in that a number of the axes, spears, lances, and swords date to as early as the Spring and Autumn period (770-476 BC). The exquisite lacquerware has attracted tremendous attention due to its elaborate decoration, suggesting that the primary figures interred at this site were of high rank and stature. Among the objects, archaeologists found stringed musical instruments such as erhuan and se, and combs, all decorated with a variety of designs such as black and red dragons, metamorphosing birds, and cloud patterns. After analyzing such markings, researchers determined that these pieces could be dated to the Warring States period (475-221 BC). But many of the pieces also had stylistic affinities, such as the elaborate dragon imagery, which related to artworks from the late Spring and Autumn period (770-476 BC). This marks the first time within the boundaries of Chengdu that a burial dating to the Warring States has been found. For those studying the ancient kingdom of Shu and its position during the Warring States period, this represents a tremendous find.

Yan Jinsong and Chen Yunhong, Zhongguo wenwu bao (13 December 2000), p. 1.

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4,000-Year-Old Tombs Rediscovered in Lop Nur

Chinese archaeologists have recently rediscovered the Xiaohe Tombs (Small River tombs) in Lop Nur, a desert in Northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, after they were first found 66 years ago. Chinese archaeologists found some 100 wooden poles on a sand dune. The poles are symbols of the Xiaohe Tombs and demonstrate how people buried the dead. The tombs were first found by Folke Bergman, a Swedish archaeologist, in the summer of 1934 and are considered the most mysterious place in the exploration of Loulan, an ancient kingdom located in the area, and Xinjiang. Covering 2,500 square meters, the Xiaohe Tombs have remained hidden in the Lop Nur desert from 1934 until the late 1990s when members of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences (CASS) translated Bergman's book on archaeological exploration in the area into Chinese. Also found were bent wooden blocks, human bones, dismembered mummies and woven pieces of wool. But no living plants were found. Bergman asserted that mummies unearthed in the area date back 4,000 years and belong to Aryans. Yang Lian, a CASS researcher, said that the Xiaohe Tombs might be the imperial tombs of the Loulan Kingdom: "These play a very important role in the research of the Loulan civilization and the climatic changes in Lop Nur." Xiaohe, named by Bergman, runs from south to north in the delta area of the Tarim and Kongque rivers in Xinjiang. The rivers were marked as seasonal on the geological map of China at the end of the 1950s, and has since then completely evaporated.

From People's Daily on-line (9 January 2001).

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Earthen Burial Jar Tomb Discovered in Hebei Province

Last year archaeologists located a series of earthen burial jars along the Erdao (two-path) River in Hebei Province. For the most part, burials lay on a north-south axis. Each burial consisted of two pieces: for example archaeologists located cauldron/jar and cauldron/basin combinations, which, once fitted, formed a burial jar for the deceased. Some of the jar-coffins contained the skeletal remains of children. An assemblage of burial goods accompanied these burials. From the style of burial and the tools used in creating these burial jars, this site serves as an excellent example of Warring States (475-221 BC)
period earthen jar burials.

Liu Lianqiang, Zhongguo wenwu bao (26 November 2000), p. 1.

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Neolithic and Early Western Han Artifacts Discovered in Huizhou Chengkan Village, Anhui

Archaeologists discovered a bountiful site of stone, iron, pottery and bronze tools during excavations in Anhui Province. Among the stone tools, knives, scrapers, and net weights were unearthed. Also found were pottery artifacts such as jars and pottery wheels. The metal objects included iron swords and bronze bells. Researchers have determined that one part of the finds can be dated to the late Western Han (206 BC - AD 8) and were used in daily life. Another portion of the remains date to the Neolithic period and are again items used in daily life and perhaps in ritual. These remains provide some indication as to the state of human habitation and settlement during the Western Han. But one of the most fascinating aspects of the find, according to researchers, is the information, which it provides regarding habitation and development during the Neolithic period in China, 4,000 to 5,000 years ago.

Xian Xue and Guo Sheng, Zhongguo wenwu bao (26 November 2000), p. 1.

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Remains of Southern Song Lin'an Prefectural Seat Found in Hangzhou

New finds in present day Hangzhou have revealed a vast amount of information supplementing historical writings on Lin'an, a prefectural seat during the Southern Song dynasty (1127-1279). From May to June 2000 an archaeological rescue mission in conjunction with city development projects undertook the daunting task of uncovering 170 square meters. The designs carved upon the floor tiles of the main hall, resembling floral and lotus motifs, were among the most ornate and decoratively striking of the remains. In addition to the brick and stone floors of the main hall, archaeologists found water storage pits and wells in the west wing. These discoveries prompted a further set of excavations in July and August. During this period more than 880 square meters were revealed, uncovering chanting and recitation halls and courtyards with large and small wells. Also found were a number of tools and weaponry such as knives and crossbows for training troops. All of these discoveries have contributed in creating a historical timeline for Lin'an, which ranges from the Southern Song through the Ming (1368-1644) dynasties. Other important architectural finds included earthenware roof tiles with floral motifs. A wide variety of white, blue-and-white, imperial red and under-glaze black shades of ceramics were also found. Archaeologists also discovered the kilns at the site used to create the vases, basins, dishes and jars. The remains reveal that during the last remaining years of the Southern Song Dynasty a road was built over the site; remains of a large-scale fire were found, indicating destruction of the original buildings. During the Yuan (1271-1368), residences were built over the old brick road, and in the Ming a series of wells, as well as the advanced pottery and tile designs, were created.

Liang Baohua and Du Zhengxian, Zhongguo wenwu bao (22 November 2000), p. 1.

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A General Ground Survey for Silver in Gansu Turns Up the Remains of a Han Dynasty City

In the countryside of Huangqiao in Shuangpu Village, Gansu Province the remains of an ancient city dating to the Han dynasty (206 BC - AD 220) have been discovered. The site extends 120 meters wide and 150 meters long and contains numerous pottery shards, vessels, jars, tools, and coins. Further investigation into has revealed its inherent value and role as a link in the communication between Ningxia, Qinghai, Xinjiang and Gansu. Archaeologists have surmised that this city also had a crucial role in troop movements. This site, often called Silver City, marks a crucial component in the history of the discovery and trade of silver in ancient times.

Zhang Zhunzhong, Zhongguo wenwu bao (26 November 2000), p. 1.

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A Military Survey and Investigation in Heilongjiang Uncovers the Ancient City of Aolimi

In addition to pottery shards, human skeletal remains, coins, and bone and iron tools dating to 800 years ago, archaeologists have discovered evidence of habitation and settlement remains in Heilongjiang Province. Surveyors also discovered the southern city wall, previously thought to have been washed away by the river. The wall, consisting of stones and earth, represents a traditional form of Mongolian wall-building and was used to mark city boundaries. The site also contained a series of brick tri-chimney structures for smoke conduction. In particular this site provides deep insights into the Qidan and Nuzhi peoples and their influence in Heilongjiang.

Zhang Yunpeng, Zhongguo wenwu bao (26 November 2000), p. 1.

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Han Dynasty Ruins Unearthed in Xuzhou

Archaeologists have discovered the ruins of a palace of the Han dynasty (206 BC - AD 220) and a number of relics in a construction site in downtown Xuzhou, Jiangsu province. The palace ruins are believed to be a palace of the Chu state during the Han period. This discovery indicates that Xuzhou was built, at the earliest, in 200 BC. Ruins of a city wall built in the Ming dynasty (1368-1644) had been unearthed earlier in the same place. A large number of building materials and cooking utensils, such as floor bricks, tiles and pottery, have been excavated. These were buried five meters beneath the Ming-period city wall. The tiles and building decorations not only help us appreciate the architectural styles of the Han dynasty, but also serve as important clues to Xuzhou's early history.

From People's Daily on-line, (7 December 2000).

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Changtai Tomb Murals

Recently, archaeologists discovered a tomb dating between the Jin (1115-1234) and Yuan (1279-1368) dynasties in Shanxi Province near the region of Changtai. The spectacular murals within this tomb have attracted a great deal of attention from researchers. The murals are located on the northern, eastern, and western walls on either side of the doorways. Each mural appears to be organized as a pair of figures with a man on one side and a woman on the other side of the door. While both figures are symmetrically placed, each has specific characteristics that distinguish them as individuals. The female wears a long robe that fastens in front and extends down to the feet. This particular figure is swathed in clothing resembling that of the Jin Dynasty. In contrast, the male figure on the northern wall is adorned in clothing with a marked Yuan flavor. Thus, this tomb not only reflects burial, social and artistic traditions, it also gives a hint as to the crossover between two dynasties, visible in clothing and artistic representation.

Shu Xiaofang, Zhongguo wenwu bao (19 November 2000), p. 1.

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NOTEWORTHY ESSAYS

"Chinese Policy on Cultural Property: Turning a Blind Eye"
The Art Newspaper on-line
Excerpted from article by Jonathan Napack

The recent execution of three people accused of stealing tomb murals in Shaanxi province, along with the well-publicized anti-smuggling drive of China's central government, have raised concern in some circles about a crackdown in the illicit and semi-licit trade in Chinese antiquities. Such concerns, however, while not entirely unwarranted, betray an unfamiliarity with the twists and turns of Chinese politics, as well as its sometimes rather random acts of punishment.

The flood of material into Hong Kong has actually depressed the market; buyers hesitate to buy when more of what they want at half the price may arrive the next day. Competition has also increased as leaders of Mainland smuggling rings migrate to Hong Kong and set themselves up as galleries, saving their own heads but displacing local dealers. The largest driver of the smuggling trade today is the Three Gorges Dam project. Not only have vast areas of archaeological importance been cleared, but subsidies meant for resettling villagers have been systematically misappropriated, creating a climate of corruption extreme even by Chinese standards.

For the complete article please visit http://www.theartnewspaper.com. For additional articles regarding the smuggling and illegal trade involving Chinese artifacts, see also: /newsletters/trad093000.htm#usembargo; /newsletters/trad103100.htm#thief; and /newsletters/trad113000.htm#smuggle.

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"Chinese Monumental Iron Castings"
Journal of East Asian Archaeology, vol. 2, no. 2/3
Donald B. Wagner, Denmark

This article reviews the technical aspects of the production of very large iron castings in pre-modern China. Among the matters taken up are: the piece-mold technique and the amelioration of the flash-lines which are unavoidable when this technique is used with white cast iron; the use of sulfur in producing better detail in the castings, and the effect of sulfur on the sound-quality of cast-iron bells; the use of wrought-iron reinforcement and stage-casting in the enormous Cangzhou Lion; the special problems involved in casting iron artillery; and the riddle of the lack of corrosion on many of the pre-modern monumental iron casting. The corrosion-resistance of the ancient iron castings may be related to their very low silicon content.

From www.eastasianarchaeology.org.

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"Whiff of Luxury"
http://www.asianart.com/articles/snuff/index.html
Excerpted from an article by Norman A. Rubin

Mary and George Bloch (Hong Kong) have accomplished a collector's dream. They have, within the relatively short period of fifteen years, assembled an extensive and valuable collection of one of the finest crafts of Chinese artisans - ornamental containers used for snuff tobacco during the era of the Chinese monarchy. It is perhaps one of the most important collections of these small works of art assembled since the imperial age itself. The author discusses several works in the Bloch collection, including extremely fine inside-painted glass bottles, as well as beautifully crafted enameled and porcelain snuff bottles, produced in private workshops from the Qing (1644-1911) period.

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EXHIBITIONS & MUSEUM NEWS

[past & ongoing]

Readers may wish to view a calendar listing all October 2000 to September 2001 exhibitions reported in this and previous e-bulletins.

Ancient Chinese Body Ornament from the Mengdiexuan Collection
Chang Foundation, Taipei
Until 21 January 2001

An exhibition featuring the collection of Kenneth Chu and Betty Lo.

From Orientations.

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Ancient Chinese Bronzes
Saint Louis Art Museum
Ongoing
http://www.slam.org/

This exhibition features 27 Chinese bronzes from the Museum's collection, one of the most distinguished and celebrated Chinese bronze collections in the West. These objects not only demonstrate the beauty and history of Chinese bronzes, but also show their variety of purpose as ritual vessels, sacrificial and funerary objects, historical documents and examples of ancient technology and manufacturing. Ancient Chinese bronzes give us a glimpse into the very beginnings of history in early China, and their inscriptions provide us with information about the foundation of Chinese art and culture. Using recent archaeological data from China and modern scientific methods, the Museum has studied the bronzes with an emphasis on dating, construction, style and function in accordance with recent archaeological data from China. Exciting new information has provided accurate translations and interpretations of their inscriptions and manufacture, presented here for the first time.

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Art of Asia
Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, Texas
Ongoing
http://mfah.org/curex5.html

The MFAH collection of Asian art spans a wide geographic area from India to Tibet, South East Asia, China, Korea, and Japan. It ranges in date from a Neolithic pottery jar from China dating to around 2500 BC to several Japanese ceramics made within the last decade. In addition to ceramics, the collection includes ritual bronze vessels; jades; Buddhist, Hindu and Shinto sculpture; painted hanging scrolls; handscrolls and screens; miniature paintings; woodblock prints; and textiles.

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Asia Crossroads: Selections from the Permanent Collection
San Diego Museum of Art
Ongoing
http://www.sdmart.com/exhibitions/currentpermanent/currentpermanent.html#asia

The San Diego Museum of Art collection of Asian artworks numbers over 4,000 objects and is, in fact, the largest area of the Museum's holdings. This new installation by curator of Asian art, Dr. Caron Smith, draws from a broad range of the collection, with an eye to framing old favorites in a new light and displaying objects never before on exhibition at the museum.

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Asian Art from the Permanent Collection
San Antonio Museum of Art
Ongoing
http://www.sa-museum.org/jan2001/asia.html

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Highlights from the Permanent Collection
Asian Art Museum, San Francisco
Ongoing
http://www.asianart.org/exhibits.htm

The Asian Art Museum's permanent collection encompasses more than 12,000 works of art spanning 6,000 years and representing the countries and cultures of Asia. Outstanding selections from the collection are currently on view, including Japanese, Indian, Himalayan, Southeast Asian, and Islamic works. The Southeast Asian galleries feature new acquisitions-including Indonesian and Cambodian bronzes-as well as old favorites from both mainland and island Southeast Asia. The Japanese galleries contain an impressive collection of hanging scrolls, handscrolls and painted screens, as well as bamboo baskets, textiles and ceramics. The Himalayan galleries boast intricately woven thankas and mandalas, numerous gilt bronze and copper statues of deities, ritual instruments made of bone, and ornate jewelry.

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In Pursuit of Green: Celadon in China
Seattle Art Museum
Ongoing
http://www.seattleartmuseum.org/exhibitions/general/exhibit.htm

The emergence of green-glazed wares during the Shang dynasty (ca. 1600-1030 BC) marked a revolutionary change from low-fired to high-fired ceramics. Greater in strength and impervious to liquid, the technique dramatically expanded the usage of pottery as practical utensil, and its shiny, greenish glaze offered a fresh aesthetic appeal. The green color in its wide range of tones is due to the natural presence of iron oxide in the glaze. This accidentally-produced beauty soon became the subject of ardent pursuit, which eventually led to the pure, succulent green we call celadon. For nearly three thousand years, green-glazed wares remained the favorite type of ceramics in Chinese tradition and exerted great influence on ceramic traditions in Korea and Japan. This installation traces the development of green-glazed wares in China from its inception to its aesthetic zenith in the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries.

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The Chinese Gallery
Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, Richmond
Opened February 2001

The new installation presents a wide range of artworks that date from the 3rd century BC through to the 19th century. Organized around six themes, the gallery tells the story of the diverse and profound history and culture of ancient China. Significant pieces not on view since the 1980s will be displayed together with ancient bronze vessels, refined jades, monumental Buddhist sculpture, exquisite lacquer ware and elegant blanc de chine porcelain.

From Orientations.

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China und die Hoffnung auf Gluck: Sammlung Peter und Irene Ludwig
Museum fur Ostasiatische Kunst, Cologne, Germany
Until 18 February 2001


From Orientations.

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The Robert and Kay Gow Family Collection of Ancient Chinese Art
Naples Museum of Art, Florida
7 November 2000 - 1 June 2001
http://www.naples-florida.com/cofevt.htm

Spanning over 2000 years this rare collection offers an overview of the treasures of the Orient.

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Streams and Mountains Without End: East Asian Landscape Painting
Sackler Museum, Harvard University
25 November 2000 - 26 August 2001
http://www.artmuseums.harvard.edu/exhibitions/sackler/withoutend.html

Drawing upon works from the Sackler's permanent collection, as well as from one of the most distinguished private collections of Chinese painting in the country, this exhibition will display an impressive array of East Asian landscape paintings. Typically composed of towering mountains and flowing streams, landscapes emerged as the principal subject of Chinese painting by the Song dynasty (960-1279) and have remained preeminent amongst the arts of East Asia for over 1000 years. The Chinese-style depiction of landscapes spread in the 14th and 15th centuries, soaring to popularity in Korea during the Choson dynasty (1392-1910) and in Japan during the Muromachi period (1392-1573). Landscapes--whether real or imagined--reflected the philosophical search for the principles that underlie the unity and harmony of nature, a search intricately linked to Daoism.

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China: Fifty Years Inside the People's Republic
Minneapolis Institute of Art
10 December 2000 - 4 March 2001
http://www.artsmia.org/exhibits/index.html

This exhibition includes some of the most significant images made in China by both Asian and Western photographers since 1949. It presents cultural, political and everyday life as seen by great photographers of the era. Their insights on a country long virtually closed to the West evoke a magnificent land and its people and an extraordinary time in history. The exhibition captures the complex and passionate attachments that bind both the native-born and foreign artist to China for a lifetime. A fully illustrated catalogue accompanies the exhibition.

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Beautiful Writing: Calligraphy from China's Imperial Age
Newark Museum
17 January - 31 December 2001
http://www.newarkmuseum.org/pages/exhibit.html

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Ming Painting Through the Eyes of Connoisseurs
Spencer Museum of Art, University of Kansas
20 January - 4 March 2001
http://www.ukans.edu/~sma/smahome/exhibitions/future.html

Twelve Ming Dynasty (1368�1644) painted scrolls from the Nelson Atkins Museum in Kansas City, the Spencer Museum of Art, and the Allen Memorial Museum at Oberlin College are exhibited to explore the connoisseurship of Chinese Ming painting. Organized by students in a graduate seminar in Chinese art led by Professor Marsha Weidner, University of Kansas, and the Spencer Museum of Art.

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Friends of the Cold Season: Pine, Plum and Bamboo
Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art, Cornell University
20 January - 18 March 2001
http://www.museum.cornell.edu/

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Chinese Arts of the Brush, 17th-18th Century
Freer/Sackler Galleries, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC
21 January - 22 July 2001
http://www.asia.si.edu/exhibitions/chinesebrush.htm

This exhibition--containing seventeen landscape paintings and works of calligraphy ranging in date from 1638 to 1752--focuses on artists and works from four major geographical regions: the lower Yangzi River Delta region, the Yellow Mountains and vicinity, and the two cities of Nanjing and Yangzhou. When Manchu armies invaded China from the northwest in 1644, destroying the Ming dynasty (1368-1644) and establishing the Qing (1644-1911), the attending cataclysm led to enormous changes in every aspect of Chinese life. As reflected in painting and calligraphy, the widely varied responses of native Chinese to alien rule closely mirrored those in the social and political spheres, with some artists clinging to the old and others finding opportunities to advance.

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Gottliches Walten und Irdische Gluck: Chinesische Neujahrsbilder der Sammlung Wallenstein
Museum fur Ostasiatische Kunst, Berlin, Germany
31 January - 29 April 2001

An exhibition presenting a selection of about 40 Chinese popular prints from the early 20th century, among which are colorful woodblock prints of door gods representing the "New Year's prints" genre. The selection covers a wide range of subjects and is drawn from the extensive collection of Gerd and Lotti Wallenstein, which was donated to the museum by the Cosmopolitan Arts Foundation, New York, in 1984.

From Orientations.

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[upcoming]

Constructing the Cosmos in the Religious Arts of Asia
Pacific Asia Museum, Pasadena, California
3 February - 6 May 2001

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Treasures of the Chinese Scholar
McClung Museum, University of Tennessee
3 February - 6 May 2001
http://mcclungmuseum.utk.edu/upcoming/upcoming.htm

This exhibition features 186 extraordinary objects from the studios of Chinese scholars. It includes calligraphy, painting, and works of art in wood, lacquer, ivory, stone, horn, and metal. The objects date from as early as the Zhou Dynasty (770-256 BC) through the Qing Dynasty (AD 1644-1911).

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Creation, Constellations and the Cosmos
Norton Simon Museum, Pasadena, California
4 February - 4 June 2001
http://www.nortonsimon.org/nsmspec.htm

The organizing principle of this exhibition is the "Universe," a broad term that has been narrowed down into four major themes. The first theme centers on artistic representations of Axis Mundi, the cosmic axis that serves as the symbolic connection between heaven and earth. The second theme, Light Symbolism, is an exploration of halos, markers of divine status which are given to Christian as well as Asian heavenly beings. Cosmic Circles demonstrates how this perfect geometric shape takes on a divine and sacred quality. Finally, the exhibition will visit the Constellations, including artistic depictions of solar and lunar motifs. Creation, Constellations and the Cosmos, provides a rare opportunity to take a global view of these great themes by exploring sixty works of exceptional quality and considerable beauty in the Norton Simon Museum.

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Seeing Double: Copies and Copying in the Arts of China
The Art Museum, Princeton University
13 February - 1 July 2001
http://webware.princeton.edu/artmus/

An overview of the way Chinese artists have traditionally copied, imitated, and alluded to earlier works in the technical production and aesthetic appreciation of art.

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Taoism and the Arts of China
Asian Art Museum, San Francisco
21 February -13 May 2001
http://www.asianart.org/exhibits.htm#Taoism

Taoism (or Daoism, the belief in "the Way" of the universe) stands at the core of Chinese culture, having a profound influence on such diverse realms as politics, warfare, medicine, painting, martial arts and even Chan (Zen) Buddhism. This unprecedented exhibition brings together 150 works of art ranging in date from 500 BC to AD 1800 that explore these extraordinary ancient teachings. Included are extremely rare and precious scroll paintings, sculptures, calligraphy, textiles, ritual objects, and books gathered from more than 50 lenders in nine countries. Significantly, thirty-three works will be borrowed from institutions in the People's Republic of China, only two of which have been previously exhibited in the West.

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Clay and Brush: Chinese Painted Pottery from the AD Hong Collection
Denver Art Museum
4 March 2000 - 4 March 2001
http://www.denverartmuseum.org/

Since the Neolithic period, Chinese potters have decorated vessels and other clay objects with painted designs. This exhibition reveals methods of using different coloring agents and painted motifs as a means of embellishing clay surfaces. While painted containers and figures continued to be made well after the development of colored glazes, multicolored glazes and enamels eventually became the dominant means of decorating ceramics, replacing the ancient Chinese technique.

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Forgotten Fragments from the Silk Road: Central Asian Buddhist Murals in Context
Freer/Sackler Galleries, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC

9 September 2001 - 7 July 2002
http://www.asia.si.edu/exhibitions/future.htm

Originating in India, the practice of cave temple excavation and decoration has been carried on in Asia since the first century AD. Decorated cave temples represent one of the largest groups of remains from medieval China and Central Asia. This exhibition presents fifteen fine examples of 5th- to 6th-century mural fragments from the Kuchean school of Buddhist mural painting. Removed in 1914 from the cave site of Qizil, some have never before been on view. The exhibition introduces the public to this artistic tradition while emphasizing the interdependent nature of the art and architecture of these cave temples, as well as the religious meaning and function of the overall decorative design of these extraordinary caves.

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Celebrating Virtue: Prestige Costume and Fabrics of Late Imperial China
Glenbow Museum
29 September 2001 - 2 February 2002

An exhibition reflecting the opulence and pageantry of last imperial age. The 42 garments and textiles, dating from the 17th to the early 20th century, are from the Textile Museum of Canada and the Glenbow Museum and many have never been exhibited before. The title of exhibition was taken by guest curator John Vollmer from a quote by leading Confucian historian Ban Gu who rationalized the elevated status of the ruling classes by noting: "the ancients used clothing for the purpose of distinguishing between the noble and the common and to illustrate virtue so as to encourage the imitation of good example."

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[museum news]

National Museums Buy Art from Failed Japanese Bank

Public funds in Japan have been used to secure art from the collection of a bankrupt financial institution. A dozen pieces have been purchased from the failed Osaka-based Kofuku Bank at a cost of about Y480 million (US$4.34 million) by the Tokyo National Museum and the Kyoto National Museum.

From Art Newspaper on-line.

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AUCTION & MARKET NEWS

[recent]

Sotheby's

Oriental Ceramics, Works of Art, Carvings, and European Ceramics & Glass
Sussex
17 January 2001

International Silver, Portrait Miniatures & Vertu, Oriental Ceramics & Works of Art and European Ceramics & Glass
Sussex
29 January 2001

From http://www.sothebys.com.

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New York Ceramics Fair
National Academy of Design, New York
18-21 January 2001

Dealers exhibiting Asian ceramics include Cohen & Cohen, Dai Ichi Arts, Antikwest, Peter Kemp, Orientations Gallery and Lea Sneider. Ronald Otsuka, Curator of Asian Art, Denver Art Museum will be giving a lecture, "Living National Treasures of Japan: Ceramics and Family Traditions," on Sunday, 21 January.

From Orientations.

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Winter Antiques Show
New York
18-
28 January 2001

Dealers exhibition Asian wokrs of art include Ralph M. Chait Galleries Inc.

From Orientations.

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Rouge et Noir: The Colors of North and South China
E & J Frankel Ltd.
1040 Madison Avenue, New York
18 January - 3 March 2001

The thirty exhibits selected for this show are associated with the cosmological directions of north and south.

From Orientations.

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Christie's

Chinese Export
New York
23 January 2001


Asian Decorative Arts
London
25 January 2001


From http://www.christies.com.

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Spiritual Aesthetics - Paris School Painting and Classical Chinese Furniture: Ideas on Modernism
Galerie Luohan at Galerie Louis Carre & Cie.
10 avenue de Messine, Paris
23 January - 24 February 2001

From Orientations.

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Chinese and Other Asian Export Porcelain and Works of Art
William Doyle Auctioneers & Appraisers, New York
24 January 2001


From Orientations.

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[upcoming]

Arts of Pacific Asia Show
Festival Pavilion, Fort Mason Center, San Francisco
2-4 February 2001

Participating dealers include Art of the Past, L'Asie Exotique, Robert Brundage, Robyn Buntin, Michael Cohn, Evelyn's Antique Chinese Furniture, Honeychurch Antiques, Imari Gallery, Silk Roads Design Gallery, The Jade Dragon, Jewel of The Lotus, Thomas Murray, Paragon Book Gallery, Marc Richards, Jon Eric Riis, Tai Gallery/Textile Arts, Robyn Turner, Vallin Galleries, Sandra Whitman, Linda Wrigglesworth and The Zentner Collection.


From Orientations.

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Kunsthaus Lempertz
Neumarkt 3, 50667 Cologne, Germany
http://www.lempertz.com

Varia
3 February 2001
Old, modern, contemporary, East Asian and decorative art.

Asian Art
8-9 June 2001

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Tribal, Folk and Textile Arts Show
Festival Pavilion, Fort Mason Center, San Francisco
9-11 February 2001

Folk Art International, L'Asie Exotique, Robert Brundage, Thomas Murray, Peter Pap, Vicki Shiba and Traders of the Lost Arts will be exhibiting tribal arts from Asia.


From Orientations.

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Christie's

Asian Decorative Arts
South Kensington, London
22 February 2001

http://www.christies.com

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Asian Art Auction
I. M. Chait Gallery
9330 Civic Center Drive, Beverly Hills, California
25 February 2001
25 March 2001
20 May 2001

From Orientations.

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Enduring Art of Jade Age China
Throckmorton Fine Art
153 East 61st Street, New York
2 March - 30 April 2001

This exhibition and sale features ancient Chinese jades of the Neolithic through Han periods. The accompanying catalog includes an essay and translated articles by Elizabeth Childs-Johnson with contributions from Wen Guang and Sun Shoudao.

Courtesy of Elizabeth Childs-Johnson.

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Chinese Furniture, Sculpture and Works of Art
Nicholas Grindley at Kate Ganz
25 East 73rd Street, New York 1
4-23 March 2001

From Orientations.

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TEFAF Maastricht
Maastricht, The Netherlands
10-18 March 2001

Dealers showing Asian works of art include Ben Janssens and Vanderven and Vanderven.


From Orientations.

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Chinese Buddhist Sculpture
Oriental Arts (UK) Ltd.
at Maxwell Davidson Gallery
41 East 57th Street, New York
18-25 March 2001

From Orientations.

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Asian Works of Art
Doyle New York
19 March 2001

From Orientations.

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Masterpieces of Tang Ceramic Sculpture
Eskenazi at Pace Wildenstein
32 East 57th Street, New York
19-31 March 2001

Fourteen pieces of Tang earthenware sculpture will be featured in this exhibition. Among the most exceptional and rare examples are a finely modeled group of two female figures and a baby and a group depicting a Western Asiatic woman seated astride a kneeling Bactrian camel between its two humps while nursing a baby at her left breast.

From Orientations.

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Chinese Bronzes, Ceramics and Works of Art - Spring 2001
Weisbrod Chinese Art Ltd.
36 E 57th Street, 3rd Floor, New York
20-29 March 2001

From Orientations.

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Ancient China: Music and Ritual
J. J. Lally & Co.
41 East 57 Street, New York
20 March - 8 April 2001

The beauty and mystery of ancient Chinese rituals can be seen in the carefully selected archaic bronze and sculptures. The highlight of the show will be archaic bronze bells dating from the Shang to Western Han periods. A massive Shang period nao form bell is the earliest example and the largest and most elaborate example is a Eastern Zhou period bell of yongzhong form.

From Orientations.

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The International Asian Art Fair
The Seventh Regiment Armory
Park Avenue at 67th Street, New York
23-28 March 2001
Benefit preview for The Asia Society, 22 March 2001

Sixty leading international dealers in art treasures from the Near and Far East and South East Asia gather once again to exhibit some of the finest works the market currently has to offer. This annual celebration of superlative quality Asian art from across history is renowned among Asian art lovers around the world; a rich showcase to be enjoyed by all and appealing to institutional and private buyers, whether seeking major or smaller acquisitions. As usual, items on display and sale include furniture, sculpture, bronzes, ceramics, carpets, textiles, pictures, works of art and jewelry. All works are for sale under the strictest vetting conditions. For further information contact:

The International Asian Art Fair Ltd.
31 Old Burlington Street
London W1X 1LB, UK
Tel: + (44) 171 734 5491
Fax: + (44) 171 494 4604
E-mail: info@haughton.com

From http://www.haughton.com/.

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Asian Works of Art
Sloan's
4920 Wyaconday Road, N. Bethesda, Maryland
2 April 2001

From Orientations.

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Los Angeles Antiques Show
3-6 May 2001

Ralph M. Chait Galleries will be exhibiting.


From Orientations.

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Nagal Auction
Stuttgart, Germany
http://www.auction.de

Asian Art
18-19 May 2001

Asian Art
9-10 November 2001

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Sotheby's

Chinese and Japanese Ceramics and Works of Art
Amsterdam
22 May 2001

From Orientations.

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The International Ceramics Fair & Seminar
The Park Hotel, London
15-18 June 2001

European and Asian ceramics: pottery, porcelain, glass and enamels from all periods, including contemporary studio work. All works are for sale under the strictest vetting conditions. For further information, contact:

The International Ceramics Fair & Seminar Ltd
31 Old Burlington Street
London W1X 1LB, U.K.
Telephone: (0)20 7734 5491
Fax: (0)20 7494 4604
E-Mail: info@haughton.com


From http://www.haughton.com/.

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Butterfields San Francisco
Fine Asian Works of Art
23 May 2001
16-17 October 2001
http://www.butterfields.com/index2.html

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Cultura 2001: The World Art and Antiques Fair
Museum der Culturen, Basel
13-21 October 2001

Although the show features Classical Antiquities and art from Rome, Greece, and Egypt, Asian art will also appear at this year's fair, with the addition of several distinguished specialists in Himalayan art, underlining the Tibetan theme of Cultura 2000. The exhibition focused on Tibetan Art with a highly acclaimed show of highlights from the renowned Essen Collection of Tibetan Art, has recently been donated to the Museum der Culturen, Basel.

From http://www.art-antiques.ch/.

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The International Asian Art Fair
The Seventh Regiment Armory
Park Avenue at 67th Street, New York
19-25 October 2001

From Orientations.

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[market news]

Auction Houses Expand into China While Local Market Is Contracting

Taiwan's auction market is only eleven years old. The $18.2 million auction market is divided fairly neatly between four houses: Christie's (29%), Ching Shiun (27%) Unique (24%) and the newest and most enterprising, Ravenel (20%).

Expansion is widely seen as a way to combat the contracting local market. This year has seen a dramatic drop in the value of Chinese antiques in Taiwan, something, which can be attributed as much to oversupply as it can to a decline in the island's economic performance. Sotheby's stopped holding their biennial auctions in Taipei last year. Bobbie Hu (director of Sotheby's Taiwan) suggested it was due to restructuring within Sotheby's, but a more likely explanation is the poor returns from Taiwan's market. The company is, nevertheless, still sourcing work and nurturing clients in Taiwan.

The decline in the auction market in Taiwan is symptomatic of a wider economic malaise. Taiwan's macro economy performance has dipped in the third and fourth quarter of 2000. The domestic economy is, at present, a cause of fiscal as well as political concern to the Taiwanese. It has resulted in the exodus of capital and manufacturing plants from Taiwan to China and it is this exodus or expansion, which has started to characterize the Taiwanese art market as well.

The self-sufficiency of Taiwan's art market has been vigorously tested since the Asian Economic Flu of 1998, but there is evidence of clear strategic planning from many of its leading art and auction companies which should ensure that it survives, albeit in a regional as opposed to local form.

Excerpted from an article by Iain Robertson, The Art Newspaper on-line.

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CONFERENCES, SYMPOSIA, LECTURES

Readers may wish to view a calendar listing all June 2000 to May 2001 conferences and symposia reported in this and previous e-bulletins.

[recent]

"New Interdisciplinary Research on the Paleolithic Deposits at Locality I, Zhoukoudian (Chou-k'ou-tien), China"
Paul Goldberg (Dept. of Archaeology, Boston University)
Ofer Bar-Yosef (Dept. of Anthropology, Harvard University)
Boston University East Asian Archaeology Forum
The International Center for East Asian Archaeology and Cultural History
29 November 2000


From the Chinese and Japanese Art History WWW Virtual Library.

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"Looking at Leftovers: Material Evidence of Painting Techniques Used in Tang Murals"
Lucien van Valen
Seminar on Chinese Language, Literature and Culture
Sinologisch Instituut, Leiden University
6 December 2000


From the Chinese and Japanese Art History WWW Virtual Library.

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"The Tale of a Revolution: Chinese Blue and White Porcelain"
Dr. Mimi Gardner Gates
Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, Kansas City
20 January 2001
Nelson-Atkins website

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[upcoming]

"Seeking the Self Amid Mountains and Waters: The Expressive Dimension of Landscape in Chinese Painting"
Maxwell K. Hearn
Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, Kansas City
3 February 2001
Nelson-Atkins website

For over a millennium, Chinese artists have explored the idiom of landscape painting as an independent genre by combining their own personal style with traditional techniques. Dr. Maxwell K. Hearn, curator of Chinese art at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, will speak about how these artists have developed landscape painting over the past 10 centuries through images of masterpieces from the collection of the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

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"Modern Masters of Chinese Painting, 1860-1980"
Maxwell K. Hearn
Metropolitan Museum of Art
Uris Center Auditorium
11 February 2001
MMA website

 

"Early China: New Archaeological Discoveries"
Carol Michaelson
China - The Visual Arts, Continuity and Change Series
Asia House at Brunei Gallery Lecture Theatre
School of Oriental & African Studies
Thornaugh Street, Russell Square, London WC1
26 February 2001


Some of the most important archaeological finds in recent years have been excavated from tombs and burial pits in China. These dramatic discoveries reveal astounding evidence of their occupants' personal riches and the wealth of the states they ruled. They show how radically ways of life and conceptions of the cosmos changed over the 6000 years from the Neolithic (ca. 4500 BC) to the end of the Tang dynasty (AD 916). This lecture will highlight artistic masterpieces from China's richest archaeological sites.

From the Chinese and Japanese Art History WWW Virtual Library.

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"Ming Porcelain & The Forbidden City"
Rose Kerr
China - The Visual Arts, Continuity and Change Series
Asia House at Brunei Gallery Lecture Theatre
School of Oriental & African Studies
Thornaugh Street, Russell Square, London WC1
28 February 2001


Chinese porcelain for the Imperial Court was made at official kilns in the city of Jingdezhen. This lecture will trace the links between the northern capital and the southern city. Artefactual evidence and textual record demonstrate the chains of command that stretched from the Forbidden City to the porcelain kilns.

From the Chinese and Japanese Art History WWW Virtual Library.

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"Hidden Treasures: Reading Chinese Sculpture"
Ann Paludan
(Independent Scholar)
China - The Visual Arts, Continuity and Change Series
Asia House at Brunei Gallery Lecture Theatre
School of Oriental & African Studies
Thornaugh Street, Russell Square, London WC1
5 March 2001


Superficial similarities with Western sculpture have tended to distort our evaluation of Chinese sculpture. To understand the full richness of Chinese statuary and the nature of one of the world's greatest sculptural traditions, we need to look at the unwritten principles on which it is based. These determine the range of sculpture, its purpose, and the materials and techniques.

From the Chinese and Japanese Art History WWW Virtual Library.

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"Shopping in the Ming: The Art Market in 17th-Century China"
Craig Clunas
China - The Visual Arts, Continuity and Change Series
Asia House at Brunei Gallery Lecture Theatre
School of Oriental & African Studies
Thornaugh Street, Russell Square, London WC1
12 March 2001


Chinese works of art have been valuable commodities for centuries, and China has long had a sophisticated art market of dealers and collectors. This lecture, based on the personal diaries of the Ming collector Li Rihua, will provide a fascinating insight into daily life and luxury consumerism at the period, as well as revealing some of the less savory tricks of the art trade in 17th century China.

From the Chinese and Japanese Art History WWW Virtual Library.

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"Some Rediscovered Ming-Qing Paintings at the University of Pennsylvania Museum"
James Cahill
University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology, Philadelphia
14 March 2001

From Orientations.

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"The Arts of China, Japan, and Korea: Influence, Confluence, and Divergence"
New York University School of Continuing and Professional Studies
48 Cooper Square, Room 108, New York
15-17 March 2001
http://www.scps.nyu.edu/asianconf

This conference looks at the arts of China, Japan, and Korea as unique cultural productions, and as the result of the subtle intermingling of influence. Topics to be discussed include the ways in which the art of one country influences that of another and the assimilation of influence. Examinations of the arts of painting, ceramics, lacquerware, and textiles offer more detailed and specific views of the confluence, divergence, and interregional influences in the arts of each country. Emphasis is on the premodern era, prior to the 20th century, with some attention paid to the transformation of traditional art forms after 1900. We also consider contemporary and historical collecting, the market, and issues relating to conservation and display. Evening activities at museums and galleries complement sessions held at the University.

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"'Like Mists & Rains before my Eyes': Experience & Encounter in the Brush Arts"
Shane McCausland
China - The Visual Arts, Continuity and Change Series
Asia House at Brunei Gallery Lecture Theatre
School of Oriental & African Studies
Thornaugh Street, Russell Square, London WC1
20 March 2001


Between the 10th and 14th centuries in China, works of painting and calligraphy were reformatted wholesale from their original screens, panels and walls into the modern scroll. This lecture will explore the role of connoisseurs in this formative process of reinventing the past.

From the Chinese and Japanese Art History WWW Virtual Library.

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"Transition to Modernity: Chinese Style versus International Style"
Frances Wood

China - The Visual Arts, Continuity and Change Series
Asia House at Brunei Gallery Lecture Theatre
School of Oriental & African Studies
Thornaugh Street, Russell Square, London WC1
26 March 2001


China was never impervious to "foreign" influence, particularly in the arts. The influence of the various cultures of the western ends of the Silk Road, of Jesuit printing on Chinese graphic and applied arts, and of Jesuit baroque architecture in the grander houses of the 18th century all point to an openness to new styles. In the early 20th century, however, Western styles, adopted in China's treaty ports became more contentious. Before and after the establishment of Communist China, debates raged about international versus Chinese styles.


From the Chinese and Japanese Art History WWW Virtual Library.

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"Writing Culture: A Symposium on Chinese Calligraphy"
Seattle Asian Art Museum
21 April 2001

For more information, please call (206) 903-5296, or e-mail theresac@seattleartmuseum.org.

From the Chinese and Japanese Art History WWW Virtual Library.

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The International Ceramic Art Symposium, Yixing, China 2001
Dingshu Town, Yixing City, Jiangsu Province
29 May - 3 June 2001

For further information, contact the Symposium Co-chairman, Richard Notkin.


From the Chinese and Japanese Art History WWW Virtual Library.

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NEW BOOKS AVAILABLE FROM CHINESE-ARTBOOKS.COM

Peking: Temples and City Life, 1400-1900
Susan Naquin
Berkeley: University of California Press, 2000

Using the temples of Beijing during the Ming (1368-1644) and Qing (1644-1911) dynasties, the author "carefully excavates Peking's varied public arenas, the city's transformation over five centuries, its human engagements, and its rich cultural imprint."

 

 

Yuyuan shangshi (The Imperial Rocks)
Zhang Lin
Zhonghua shangwu lianhe yinshua youxian gongsi, 2000

 


 

The Fushoutang Collection Important Classical Chinese Paintings from Japan
Christie's Hong Kong, 2000


Art in China (Oxford History of Art Series)
Craig Clunas
Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1997

 

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Yuan lin jing dian (Classics of Gardens: Appreciation of Gardens and Gardening in Jiangnan of China)
Fang Peihe and Jian Yi
Hangzhou: Zhejiang renmin meishu chubanshe, 1999

Ming Qing Su shi jiaju (Ming and Qing Furniture from Suzhou)
Pu Anguo
Beijing: Zhongguo shudian, 1999

Qingdai mingren hua gao (Paintings by Renowned Qing Personages), 2 vols.
Hu Houxuan
Beijing: Zhongguo shudian, 1996

Gu xi hui bian (Compilation of Ancient Imperial Seals)
Luo Fuyi, Palace Museum
Beijing, 1999

Porcelain Stories: From China to Europe
Julie Emerson, Jennifer Chen, Mimi Gardner Gates
Seattle Art Museum, 2000

China's Walled Cities
Ronald G. Knapp
Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2000

City walls are considered to be the essence and signature of the traditional Chinese city. In this brief (110 pages) book, the author provides and overview of the history and importance of walls around Chinese cities as well as explores the walls of Chang'an and Xi'an, Beijing, Nanjing, and the recently preserved city of Pingyao.

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