Friday, November 25, 2011

China Court Service

manuscript painting - royal Chinese man served by flag bearing court attendant

colourful Chinese royal court scene - seated nobleman and attendant

noble Chinaman and court attendant

Chinese court scene

Chinese Court servant with noblewoman - 19th cent.

servant kneels before nobleman in China

chinese nobility scene

Chinese nobleman on throne and attendant

nobility scene in 19th century China

nobleman + servant in China

royal court scene in China

nobleman + servant in 19th century China

Scenes of Service from a small album known as 'Chinese Drawings: Court and Society', hosted by the John Rylands University Library in Manchester.

We are told that these illustrations (scanned from colour transparencies) depict 19th century Chinese society and costumes and that these (slightly cropped) illustrations are bordered by blue silk.

This collection of delicate hand-painted scenes is part of a much larger set of Chinese cultural material owned by the Rylands Library [Chinese Collection description]. About fifty of these items are hosted on the Rylands' Luna Imaging site. Some of these sketches are just exquisite.


Morgen M said...

These are so amazing! The shading is so very realistic, and the images seem to be floating in air. I'm amazed that these are transparencies- they look like they are on porcelain.

Beulah Bee said...

There is much emphasis on servant/master since all servants look like midgets or children in proportion to the royal figure. I suspect this was by design.

Andrew said...

I like how the artist preferred not to draw the back legs of tables and chairs!

William Ma said...

These are painted on pith papers (sometimes referred to as rice papers). . . they were cut directly from the stems of Tetrapanax papyriferus (通草). Made in the southern port city of Canton, they were popular exports in the 18th and 19th centuries.

peacay said...

Thanks for the info. William.

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