Passion for porcelain
Updated: 2013-01-04 07:46
Chinese porcelain was one of the earliest artworks introduced to the Western world. Provided to China Daily
Around 80 of the finest ceramics from the collections of the British museum, the Victoria and Albert Museum and the National Museum of China are on display in the three museums' inaugural partnership. The exhibition explores the export of Chinese ceramics to Europe and their importance in the development of European porcelain industries. It shows how designs, technologies and ideas flowed between the two continents and reflects on the collective history of Chinese ceramics in the United Kingdom.
A catalogue, written by curators from the three museums has been published by the National Museum of China in English and Chinese to accompany the exhibition.
The exhibition opens with examples of Ming export ceramics, such as a bowl with European armorial designs and a Latin inscription. It looks at the shipping, ports and business arrangements that were developed by the East India Company in the 17th and 18th centuries.
A large section is devoted to "special orders" - Chinese porcelain specially commissioned by European purchasers and made after European design sources, such as a punchbowl with a scene from a print by William Hogarth.
Other highlights include a Meissen teapot, presenting the unique phenomenon of European chinoiserie, and later blue and white products.
The final section explores the collecting of Chinese porcelain in the UK, including outstanding pieces from the Song (AD 960-1279) to the Qing (AD 1644-1911) dynasty.
Date: Until Jan 6
Venue: National Museum of China, Beijing
(China Daily 01/04/2013 page23)