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Imperial era farming and weaving illustrations shown to public


The “Stroll·Huaihai, Traditional Culture Meets Office Life -- Imperially Commissioned Illustrations of Farming and Weaving” cultural exhibition was unveiled at the Hong Kong Plaza on Huaihai Road yesterday. Residents can not only pay a visit to the exhibition but also participate in such activities as embroidery and tie-dyeing to experience the glamour of traditional cultures at close quarters.

Stroll·Huaihai, Traditional Culture Meets Office Life

The Sub-district of Middle Huaihai Road has initiated a cultural project called “Stroll·Huaihai” to enrich the cultural life of the office workers in this residential area through reading, exhibitions and competitions and so on. The project will cover 16 residents' committees and 20 business buildings.

This cultural exhibition was jointly planned and organized by the Sub-district of Middle Huaihai Road, East China Normal University Press, Goulswon, Hong Kong Plaza, and was presented in the forms of color printed Xuan paper picture album and Suzhou embroidery. The original book Illustrations of Farming and Weaving (Yuzhi gengzhi tu) , now collected at the Palace Museum in Beijing, was painted by the Qing Dynasty court painter Jiao Bingzhen. His book is comprised of 23 illustrations of tilling and 23 illustrations of weaving, each of which is accompanied by a poem inscribed by Emperor Kangxi, who also wrote a preface to this book. 

Cover of the Imperially Commissioned Illustrations of Farming and Weaving

Jiao Bingzhen’s book is renowned as the “first picture album depicting the agrarian activities of rural women manufacturing silk fabric and farming men cultivating grain”, as well as the “first picture album for agrarian science popularization in the world”. The East China Normal University Press made a special effort to select 6 pieces of Japanese Bizen ware pottery which are closely related to the Illustrations displayed in this exhibition. This will help the visitors appreciate the Illustrations in a new dimension while paying homage to the agrarian culture of the south lower reaches of Yangtze River (Jiangnan Region). Many visitors have shown great interest in these exhibits. 

Office workers and residents experiencing the embroidery process

The exhibition will last until May 31 and a number of interesting activities, including lectures, weaving, embroidery and tie-dyeing will also be hosted during the exhibition.

East China Normal University