Imperial Exposure: Early Photography and Royal Portraits across Asia

When 5 Dec 2011 - 6 Dec 2011
Where Freer Gallery of Art, Meyer Auditorium
Jefferson Drive at 12th St SW
Washington, DC 20013
United States

The Empress Dowager Cixi (detail), China, Qing dynasty, 1903-1904. Courtesy of the Freer and Sackler Galleries

December 5 – 6 2011

Press Release:

Coinciding with the Sackler exhibition Power|Play: China’s Empress Dowager, this symposium examines imperial portraiture during the advent of photography in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.

While Power|Play addresses the unique circumstances and intentions behind photographs of Empress Dowager Cixi, the symposium is an opportunity for a broader comparative analysis of the engagement with photography in ruling courts across Asia. Among other topics, scholars consider how photographs of court figures were used to create images of power, to establish a sense of nationhood, and to express a religious identity, as well as the relationship between early photographic representations and more recent imperial images from the region.

Invited speakers include Ali Behdad, John Clark, Deepali Dewan, Holly Edwards, Maki Fukuoka, Luke Gartlan, Yi Gu, Christine Kim, Yuhang Li, Hyung Il Pai, Maurizio Peleggi, Ying-chen Peng, Claire Roberts, Mary Roberts, and Roberta Wue.

For more information please click here.