Faculty Dialogue: Payoffs from Chen Shu’s Paintings and Persona

September 14, 12:00pm - 1:30pm
Mānoa Campus, Webinar Add to Calendar

In seventeenth-century China, courtesans (mingji 名妓) and gentry women painters had different motivations to paint, and their paintings circulated outside their boudoirs. Many women painters, such as Chen Shu 陳書 (1660-1736), used their paintings to support their families financially. These talented women and their families were involved in creating and presenting the painters’ artistic personae. Through examples of inscriptions on Chen Shu’s paintings, we see how Chen Shu’s son, Qian Chenqun 錢陳群 (1686-1774), used her paintings and persona to reinforce his relationship with the Qianlong 乾隆 emperor and gain prestige for the family and future generations. He constructed his mother’s persona as a virtuous mother and a good wife, and, simultaneously, presented himself as a loyal subject and a filial son. He thus not only helped promote Chen Shu’s virtue but also successfully maintained a long-term relationship with the emperor and negotiated prestige for himself and the Qian family even after his retirement. Sylvia W.S. Lee earned her PhD in Art History at the Chinese U of Hong Kong and her MA in Art History from UHM. Kate A. Lingley is Associate Professor of Art History at UHM. This talk is co-sponsored with the UHM Department of Art & Art History

Event Sponsor
Center for Chinese Studies, Mānoa Campus

More Information
Pauli Tashima, 808-956-2663, china@hawaii.edu, https://hawaii.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_KHy-NO5ATi-ZWzxjprZAkg, Chen Shu's Paintings Webinar (PDF)

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