Art by the Book: Painting Manuals and the Leisure Life in Late Ming China by J. P. ParkArt by the Book: Painting Manuals and the Leisure Life in Late Ming China by J. P. Park

Art by the Book: Painting Manuals and the Leisure Life in Late Ming China

byJ. P. Park

Hardcover | February 21, 2012

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Sometime before 1579, Zhou Lujing, a professional writer living in a bustling commercial town in southeastern China, published a series of lavishly illustrated books, which constituted the first multigenre painting manuals in Chinese history. Their popularity was immediate and their contents and format were widely reprinted and disseminated in a number of contemporary publications. Focusing on Zhou's work, Art by the Book describes how such publications accommodated the cultural taste and demands of the general public, and shows how painting manuals functioned as a form in which everything from icons of popular culture to graphic or literary cliche was presented to both gratify and shape the sensibilities of a growing reading public. As a special commodity of early modern China, when cultural standing was measured by a person's command of literati taste and lore, painting manuals provided nonelite readers with a device for enhancing social capital.

About The Author

J. P. Park builds on important recent research on social status, economic development, and print publishing in late imperial China to show how a world of social meaning is evident in the literary subgenre of painting manuals, and provides insight into the links between art history, print culture, and social history.
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Details & Specs

Title:Art by the Book: Painting Manuals and the Leisure Life in Late Ming ChinaFormat:HardcoverDimensions:336 pages, 10.26 × 7.4 × 1.03 inPublished:February 21, 2012Publisher:University Of Washington PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0295991763

ISBN - 13:9780295991764

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Sometime before 1579, Zhou Lujing, a professional writer living in a bustling commercial town in southeastern China, published a series of lavishly illustrated books, which constituted the first multigenre painting manuals in Chinese history. Their popularity was immediate and their contents and format were widely reprinted and disseminated in a number of contemporary publications. Focusing on Zhou's work, Art by the Book describes how such publications accommodated the cultural taste and demands of the general public, and shows how painting manuals functioned as a form in which everything from icons of popular culture to graphic or literary cliche was presented to both gratify and shape the sensibilities of a growing reading public. As a special commodity of early modern China, when cultural standing was measured by a person's command of literati taste and lore, painting manuals provided nonelite readers with a device for enhancing social capital.The printed manuals are situated within the wider horizons of late Ming thought, literature, tastes, fashions, values, and lifestyles. Thus, in addition to students of late imperial Chinese art history, this book should appeal to those interested in later Chinese literary, social, and cultural history, to readers interested in the history of the book, and to students of early modern cultural and social theory in comparative context. - Richard Vinograd, Stanford University