Newark Museum opens Ming to Modern: Elevating the Everyday in Chinese Art

. September 20, 2013

The Newark Museum opens Ming to Modern: Elevating the Everyday in Chinese Art an exhibition on view September 18, 2013 through February 9, 2014.

Attributed to Shen Zhen Lin, Portrait of a Matriarch and Her Family in a Summer Garden, China, ca. 1850s (detail), Qing Dynasty (1644-1911). Colors, silk, paper, wood. Purchase 1928 28.1873.

Attributed to Shen Zhen Lin, Portrait of a Matriarch and Her Family in a Summer Garden, China, ca. 1850s (detail), Qing Dynasty (1644-1911). Colors, silk, paper, wood. Purchase 1928 28.1873.

To celebrate the 90th anniversary of the Museum’s first Chinese exhibition in 1923, the Newark Museum will feature over 175 treasures of Chinese art acquired over the past century, many never before displayed to the public.

uring the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911), Chinese emperors competed with their forbearers by commissioning new works of art that imitated, honored or improved upon earlier imperial commissions. In China these art objects always included “everyday” items. Tables and chairs were transformed into spectacular sculptures through the addition of gilding, lacquering and mother-of-pearl and colorful cloisonné glass insets. More than simple clothing, splendid silks covered with artful embroideries transformed in phenomenal artistic statements. Birds, cats and butterflies one sees out the window were painted on hanging scrolls, becoming monuments embedded with social commentary—the meta-data of centuries past. Ceramics and enamel wares appeared as jewels on collector’s shelves—both in the Ming (1368-1644) and Qing (1644-1911) periods and certainly today. Some of the Newark Museum’s imperial works are the other halves of pairs to holdings in the Palace Museum, Beijing, and the National Palace Museum, Taipei.

Newark Museum
49 Washington Street, Newark, NJ
07102-3176
Phone: 973.596.6550

Category: Museum News

Comments are closed.