Eastern Art Online, Yousef Jameel Centre for Islamic and Asian Art

Ashmolean − Eastern Art Online, Yousef Jameel Centre for Islamic and Asian Art

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A Shoemaker

  • Description

    Pasted into this leatherbound volume are the original watercolours for one of the earliest illustrated books on Chinese customs to be published in English. At the back is the author’s manuscript together with details of the publisher’s and printer’s quotes and a newspaper cutting announcing the publication.

    The watercolours were purchased in Canton in 1789. They are of a type produced in workshops for sale chiefly to foreigners, for whom they functioned as records of the exotic. George Henry Mason published them under the title Costumes of China yet they equally record trade and leisure activities.

  • Details

    Associated place
    Europe United Kingdom (place of creation)
    1789 - 1800
    Material and technique
    ink on paper
    page 32.5 x 25 cm (height x width)
    Material index
    Technique index
    Object type index
    No. of items
    Credit line
    Purchased with the assistance of the Art Fund, the Friends of the Ashmolean Museum, and the MLA/V&A Purchase Grant Fund, 2003.
    Accession no.
  • Further reading

    Vainker, Shelagh, ‘Costumes of China’, Orientations, 34/November, (2003), passim


    • currently in research collection

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