To complement your April newsletter, British Museum Curator’s Corner – An introduction to Ming blue and white porcelain. Some good close-ups of the designs.
If you want to splash out on your own moon vase!
Member Zara: American expert giving layman talks on ceramics. He uses the Museum virtual tour which is very high quality, picks items to expand on with superb images and he talks about them. Takes you through most of the main ceramic wares at the National Palace Museum, Taiwan, including blue-and-white at minute 25.
You can overdoes on blue-and-white Chinese porcelain at the Dresden Porcelain Collection.
Cards for the Chinese New Year – the Year of the Ox.
Cards by Colleen on her own home-made paper: water buffalo inspired by Qi Baishi, and origami valentine hearts. Water buffalo enjoying the cool water by Liz M.
Expressive water buffalo from new member Anthony:
New Year wish from teacher Maggie, and home-made envelopes from Zara:
Chris G’s card features Lao Tzu riding his ox backwards, plus amazing origami by herChinese daughter-in-law.
Cards from Hakima and Pat J. Catherine W decorated her pot-plant with Chinese knots and tassels.
Tina made some New Year cards for her grandchildren. Firstly folded an origami ox ‘red envelope – 紅包’, (using you tube video). Put couplets (the calligraphy was written on cut up, used red envelope) in the pocket of the ox, with double sided tape on the back. The idea is for the recipient to ‘hang’ them either side of the door. The house was made from magazine cuttings! 福, fu, fortune, is traditionally written upside-down.
Marion has had an outburst of origami, inspired by the MEAA online course:
Peng says “I happen to have done a few rat studies that might make some silly Christmas stories that make me laugh”:
1, Ms rat skips healthy sprouts and goes straight to the mince pies.
2, She can’t decide on whether she should have the pigs in a blanket first or a glass of wine, maybe she is already drunk.
3, ‘Control me?!, you need to tidy your kitchen first!’ The owner of the house is having some morning lie-ins after days of celebrating and drinking.
There are many lectures and webinars in Chinese art & culture. here are some recommendations from members.
ZT: I signed up for this live talk from US China Institute and very much worth watching on the Qianlong Emperor. The events are middle of the night our time but they record and send an email later so have just watched this one. The expert speakers knew their stuff and part of the restoration team at the Forbidden Palace. This link is the 1st talk in the series of 3 on the architecture of the Forbidden City.
ZT: Podcast BBC4 short ( 13mins) on maritime trade in the Ming was on this morning- Yongle Emperor and all that. David Abulafia charts the surprising extent of maritime exploration in Ming dynasty China.
CK: Have just finished a book about China and especially Yunnan. It is “The Five Foot Road” by Angus McDonald, who is an Australian who decided to follow in the footsteps of another traveller G.E.Morrison who travelled there 100 years previously. Also just finished reading Sorrow Mountain: The Remarkable Story of a Tibetan Warrior Nun by Ani Pachen and Adelaide Donelley.
China: A History in Objects (British Museum)
3812 Gallery’s 12 Days of Christmas in Chinese paintings is adding daily.
As a change from tea, Asia House’s exploration of the story of coffee.
Chinese culture and language also available with Madison Plantier (who did our AGM afternoon talk).
Online Tai Chi & Qigong.
The Met’s catalogue of Buddhist sculpture is available free.
Asia House is planning A Journey Trough the Past and Future of Human Voice: https://asiahousearts.org/one-voice/
A new approach to Chinese arts.
Unsung Heroes of Ink is a new film exploring the importance and role of paper in Chinese ink painting. Interesting trailer.
You can never have too much Hokusai. Thanks to CBPS members Jane & Zara for pointing out that the British Museum has his Great Picture Book of Everything (search BM Collection for Hokusai+everything to see all the drawings).
This collection of line drawings includes this flamboyant peacock and phoenix.
Zara: “Certainly some interesting ones to have a go at to practice my line ink drawing. Not sure he had ever seen a real elephant!”
Wuxing – “five movements” – is a traditional Chinese view of the natural world that relates the five elements of Wood, Fire, Earth, Metal, and Water to the cardinal directions, the symbolic colours – Green, Red Yellow, White and Black – and powerful mythical creatures such as the White Tiger.
Yellow is Forbidden is a documentary about luxury clothes designer Guo Pei and her aspirations to join the exclusive club of Paris haute couture. The catwalk display at the end is definitely not everyday wear!
Episode 1 introduces the archaic script of oracle bones. It also highlighted the similarities in the methods used by ancient Egyptian, Assyrian, Mayan and Chinese scripts to convey both sounds and meaning. Shots of an oriental calligrapher illustrated the effortless flow of black ink on white paper.
Episode 2 includes oriental paper making, and its gradual transmission to the west.
Xu Bing is of course well known for his other explorations of writing : the Book from the Sky – a tour de force of woodblock printing of unreal characters – Landscript, and Square Word calligraphy.
“Twenty years ago I made Book from the Sky, a book of illegible Chinese characters that no one could read. Now I have created Book from the Ground, a book that anyone can read.”—Xu Bing