ECU Libraries Catalog

The China collectors : America's century-long hunt for Asian art treasures / Karl E. Meyer and Shareen Blair Brysac.

Author/creator Meyer, Karl E. (Karl Ernest), 1937- author.
Other author/creatorBrysac, Shareen Blair, author.
Format Book and Print
EditionFirst edition.
Publication Info New York, NY : Palgrave Macmillan, 2015.
Descriptionix, 420 pages : illustrations (some color) ; 25 cm
Subject(s)
Contents Prologue. Our winding way to China -- 1. The rules of the game -- 2. Pacific overtures -- 3. The crimson path -- 4. Barrels of glue -- 5. Lament for Longmen -- 6. Penn corrals the Tang emperor's horses -- 7. Mad for Ming -- 8. Art on the rails -- 9. The porcelain bubble -- 10. Romancing the Rockefellers -- 11. The mandarin -- 12. Canada's tryst with China -- 13. Painting power -- 14. Threads of heaven -- 15. The authenticator -- 16. Streams and mountains : the view from the Middle West -- 17. The Met's marathon -- 18. Alien property -- 19. Going for the gold -- 20. The grand acquisitor -- Epilogue. Promising portals in the Great Wall.
Abstract Thanks to Salem sea captains, Gilded Age millionaires, curators on horseback and missionaries gone native, North American museums now possess the greatest collections of Chinese art outside of East Asia itself. How did it happen? The China Collectors is the first full account of a century-long treasure hunt in China from the Opium Wars and the Boxer Rebellion to Mao Zedong's 1949 ascent.
Abstract "Thanks to Salem sea captains, Gilded Age millionaires, curators on horseback and missionaries gone native, North American museums now possess the greatest collections of Chinese art outside of East Asia itself. How did it happen? "The China Collectors" is the first full account of a century-long treasure hunt in China from the Opium Wars and the Boxer Rebellion to Mao Zedong's 1949 ascent. The principal gatherers are mostly little known and defy invention. They included "foreign devils" who braved desert sandstorms, bandits and local warlords in acquiring significant works. Adventurous curators like Langdon Warner, a forebear of Indiana Jones, argued that the caves of Dunhuang were already threatened by vandals, thereby justifying the removal of frescoes and sculptures. Other Americans include George Kates, an alumnus of Harvard, Oxford and Hollywood, who fell in love with Ming furniture. The Chinese were divided between dealers who profited from the artworks' removal, and scholars who sought to protect their country's patrimony. Duanfang, the greatest Chinese collector of his era, was beheaded in a coup and his splendid bronzes now adorn major museums. Others in this rich tapestry include Charles Lang Freer, an enlightened Detroit entrepreneur, two generations of Rockefellers, and Avery Brundage, the imperious Olympian, and Arthur Sackler, the grand acquisitor. No less important are two museum directors, Cleveland's Sherman Lee and Kansas City's Laurence Sickman, who challenged the East Coast's hegemony. Shareen Blair Brysac and Karl E. Meyer even-handedly consider whether ancient treasures were looted or salvaged, and whether it was morally acceptable to spirit hitherto inaccessible objects westward, where they could be studied and preserved by trained museum personnel. And how should the US and Canada and their museums respond now that China has the means and will to reclaim its missing patrimony?" -- Publisher's description.
Bibliography noteIncludes bibliographical references and index.
Genre/formHistory.
LCCN 2014031029
ISBN9781137279767 hardcover
ISBN1137279761 hardcover

Available Items

Library Location Call Number Status Item Actions
Joyner General Stacks N7340 .M475 2015 ✔ Available Place Hold

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