"Essential reading for anyone interested in gaining insight into how the passion of collecting, that pursuit of beautiful and compelling objects, contributed to the formation of our present-day understanding and appreciation of Chinese art."--Kris Imants Ercums, Curator of Asian Art, Spencer Museum of Art at the University of Kansas "Provides a wealth of information on the dealers, collectors, and curators who formed some of the best known, and some less well known, collections of Chinese art in North America."--Lara Netting, J. Clawson Mills Fellow of Chinese Art, Metropolitan Museum of Art With the wax and wane of the relationship between China and the West, art collectors have been forced to adjust to significant changes in access to Chinese art. Increasingly tough restrictions on buying and selling artwork have been enforced by the Chinese government in an effort to safeguard the country's cultural heritage. Meanwhile, auction houses and private collecting have recently flourished within China. These new developments challenge how Westerners are able to collect and exhibit Chinese art. This detailed and carefully researched volume on the history of specific collectors, dealers, and museum collections presents a discussion between curators about the difficulties of collecting Chinese art in the twenty-first century. While highlighting the issues facing Chinese art collectors today, this volume also examines strategies employed by curators to continue to both build their collections and to document the origin and attribution of items in their collections. The essays included in this book survey collections in the United Kingdom, the United States, and Canada. Some of the world's top Chinese art scholars present intriguing case studies grounded in art objects--bronze, jade, ceramics, sculpture, and painting--and discuss hot-button issues of provenance and authenticity. They are presented here to explore the subtleties of collecting and exhibiting Chinese art, and explain how things have evolved through past centuries. Through a series of well-written and illuminating essays, this volume ultimately reveals how shifting tastes, political climates, and ambitions, as well as various opportunities and personalities were instrumental factors in forming some of the most important collections of Chinese art in the world today.
About the Author
Jason Steuber is Cofrin Curator of Asian Art for the Samuel P. Harn Museum of Art at the University of Florida. He is the author of China: 3,000 Years of Art and Literature and is the coeditor of Original Intentions: Essays on Production, Reproduction, and Interpretation in the Arts of China.