For nearly a century Canton (at the city of Guangzhou was known) was the only Chinese port at which Westerners were allowed to trade. The Western merchants leased 'hongs' (also knownas 'factories' ) outside the city walls - specious waterfront buildings adapted to suit their own tastes. Here they lived and conducted their often lucrative business, sending back tea and other Chinese products to Europe and North America.
The Hongs of Canton offers, for the first time, a history of the 'hongs' as seen through Chinese export paintings. These paintings, produced in Canton specifically for visitors from the West, combined Chinese subjects and traditions of meticulous precision with Western notions of perspective and composition. By the 1780s some of the Cantonese export artists were making skilful use of the Western medium of oil paint...
Hardback, 297 pages
The Hongs of Canton
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