Chinese art - See articles on various Chinese periods and dynasties (links in chart below), as well as articles on various media (such as bronze, ceramics, ink, jade, lacquer, and textile) and forms (such as scroll).

Making generalizations about the visual culture of any group of people is a crude endeavor, especially with a culture as diverse as China's. With this thought in mind, know that this survey, as any must be, is tremendously limited in its breadth and depth.

(This and other ArtLex articles on Chinese art will be enlarged very soon.)


Chronology of Periods
in Chinese History
 New Stone Age  c.6000 - c.1600 BCE
 Shang dynasty period  c.1600 - c.1050 BCE
 Zhou dynasty period  c.1050 - c.256 BCE
 Quin dynasty period  221 - 206 BCE
 Han dynasty period  206 BCE - 220 CE
 Three Kingdoms period  220 - 280
 Western Jin dynasty period  265 - 316
 Six Dynasties period  222 - 589
 Northern and Southern dynasties period  310 - 589
 Sui dynasty period  581 - 618
 T'ang dynasty period  618 - 907
 Five Dynasties period  907 - 960
 Liao dynasty period  907 - 1125
 Sung (Song) dynasty period  960 - 1279
 Jin dynasty period  1115 - 1234
 Yuan dynasty period  1279 - 1368
 Ming dynasty period  1368 - 1644
 Ch'ing (Qing) dynasty period  1644 - 1911
 Republic  1912 -
People's Republic (Communist)  1949 -

 

 

Examples:

 

 

see thumbnail to rightChina, Henan province, possibly Anyang, Spouted ritual wine vessel (Guang), Shang dynasty, early Anyang period (c. 1300 - c. 1050 BCE), 13th century BCE, bronze, width 13 inches (33 cm), Metropolitan Museum of Art, NY.

 

 

 

 

see thumbnail to leftChina, Female dancer, Western Han dynasty (206 BCE-CE 9), 2nd century BCE, earthenware with slip and pigments, height 21 inches (53.3 cm), Metropolitan Museum of Art, NY.

 

 

 

 

see thumbnail to rightChina, Hebei province, Maitreya altarpiece, Northern Wei dynasty, 524 CE, bronze with gilding, height 30 1/4 inches (76.9 cm), Metropolitan Museum of Art, NY. See Chinese art.

 

 

see thumbnail to leftChina, Zhejiang province, probably the vicinity of Shanglinhu, Bowl, Five Dynasties period (907-960), 10th century, stoneware with carved and incised design under celadon glaze (Yue ware), height 4 3/8 inches, Metropolitan Museum of Art, NY.

 

 

see thumbnail to rightMi Fu (Chinese, 1052-1107), Poem Written in a Boat on the Wu River, Northern Sung dynasty (960-1127), c. 1100, handscroll, ink on paper, 12 1/4 inches x 18 feet 3 1/4 inches (31.1 x 557 cm), Metropolitan Museum of Art, NY. See scroll.

 

 

China, Ming dynasty, 1403-1424, Plate with Grape Vine Decoration, blue and white glazed porcelain, Museum für Ostasiatische Kunst, Berlin.

 

 


see thumbnail to leftChina, Ming dynasty, mark and period of Hung-chih (reigned 1488-1505), Stem cup with dragon motif, porcelain with yellow and green enamel glaze, National Palace Museum, Taipei. See motif.

 

 

see thumbnail to rightChina, Emperor's 12-Symbol Robe, 18th century, Ching (Qing) dynasty, silk, metallic thread, 63 1/2 x 56 3/4 inches (161.29 x 144.15 cm), Metropolitan Museum of Art, NY. The emblems reserved for the emperor's ceremonial robes were the twelve imperial symbols seen on this garment: sun, moon, constellation, mountain, pair of dragons, bird, cups, water weed, millet, fire, ax, and the symmetrical "fu" symbol. See costume and embroidery.

 

 

 

see thumbnail to leftZhang Yuan (Chinese), Autumn Flowers, 1948, ink and color on paper, Phoenix Art Museum, AZ. See botanical and Republic period.

 

 

 

see thumbnail to rightChina, Chairman Mao Zedong, from the People's Republic of China's period known as the Cultural Revolution, 1966-1976, poster, Burke Museum, U of WA, Seattle. See portrait.

 

 

 

see thumbnail to leftChina, Man driving a tractor holds up a copy of Mao's Red Book, above a Mao quote: "Continuous revolution always going forward," from the People's Republic of China's period known as the Cultural revolution, 1966-1976, poster, Burke Museum, U of WA, Seattle.

 

 

 

 

see thumbnail to rightChina, Three Against the Enemy, from the People's Republic of China's period known as the Cultural revolution, 1966-1976, poster, Burke Museum, U of WA, Seattle.


 

 


Also see apsara, archaeology, blanc de Chine, bonsai, Buddhist art, feng shui, Japanese art, and suiseki.

 

 

 

 

 

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