Tuesday, 28 February 2017

Program for the 2017 Chinese garden history conference

Yuyuan garden, Shanghai. Credits: Gu Liyuan

The provisional programme of our 26-7th October 2017 Chinese garden history conference in Sheffield is now available!

This event is organised jointly by the Gardens Trust and the Landscape Department in the University of Sheffield. Sponsors to be announced shortly.

Tickets are on sale from March 1st, follow the link here.

New Research on the History of Chinese Gardens and Landscapes

DAY ONE: Thursday 26 October 2017

10.00-10.25      Registration
Chair: Dr Jan Woudstra, University of Sheffield
10.25               Welcome
10.30                Dr Alison Hardie, Honorary Research Fellow, University of Leeds, UK
                        Chinese Garden and Landscape Studies in the 21st Century

11.00                 Dr Lei Gao, Norwegian University of Life Sciences, As, Norway
The concept of Paradise in Chinese Buddhism and its interpretation in designed landscape in Qianglong era (1736-1795)

11.30                TEA/COFFEE
12.00                Xiaoyan Hu, PhD candidate, Liverpool University, UK 
The dialectic aesthetics of Xu (emptiness) and Shi (fullness) in Chinese landscape art (landscape painting, landscape poetry, gardening) from the Six Dynasties

12.30                Questions and discussion
13.00                LUNCH

Chair: Josepha Richard, PhD Candidate, University of Sheffield
14.00                Dr Antonio José Mezcua López, Granada University, Spain
Hangzhou’s West Lake Research Proposal: The Song Dynasty (960-1279)

14.30                Professor Carol Brash, St John’s University, Collegeville, Minnesota, USA.  Canonizing the Garden of Solitary Delight (Dule Yuan)
15.00                TEA/COFFEE
15.30                Dr Kate Bailey and Charlotte Brooks, Royal Horticultural Society, London, UK
The RHS Reeves collection of Chinese botanical watercolours: a story of people and plants in China and Britain in the early nineteenth century

16.00               Dr Lianming Wang, Heidelberg University, Heidelberg. 
Fountains and Jesuit Water Landscapes in eighteenth-century Beijing

16.30                Questions and discussion
17.00                CLOSE
Evening:          Conference Chinese dinner

DAY TWO: Friday 27 October 2017

Chair: Dr Alison Hardie Honorary Research Fellow, University of Leeds
09.55               Welcome
10.00                Dr Stephen Whiteman, University of Sydney, Australia. 
Post-histories and past formations in a Qing garden

10.30                Josepha Richard, PhD candidate, University of Sheffield, UK
East-West encounters in the Cantonese garden

11.00                COFFEE
11.30                 Youcao Ren, PhD candidate, University of Sheffield, UK 
FengShui Landscapes in the late Qing Royal Garden Design

12.00                Questions and discussion
12.30                LUNCH

Chair: Dr Sally Jeffery, The Gardens Trust
13.30                Zhang Yichi, PhD candidate, University of Technology, Sydney, Australia.
From Decoration to Necessity: the functions of Public Parks in the British Concessions of China, 1842-1937

14.00               Yuanyuan Liu, PhD candidate, University of Edinburgh, UK
The Modernisation of the Traditional Space during the Chinese Park Movement: Case Study of Xuanwu Lake in Najing, 1928-1949

14.30                TEA/COFFEE
15.00                Professor William Callahan, London School of Economics, London, UK. 
Cultivating Power: Chinese gardens as sites of diplomacy, war and peace

15.30                Questions and discussion
16.00                CLOSE

Wednesday, 14 December 2016

Dates announced for the next conference on Chinese gardens & landscape! Oct 26/27th 2017

A conference co-organised by the Gardens Trust & the Department of Landscape (University of Sheffield)

 Featuring engaging talks by specialists in several aspects of Chinese gardens and landscapes (such as history, poetry, botany, social life, layout). 

The provisional program will be announced shortly!
Disclaimer: The previous announcement was off by one day, the conference is confirmed for 26-27th of October 2017.

Friday, 9 December 2016

Online review of 'The Classical Gardens of Shanghai' by Shelly Bryant

I am always interested in Chinese local garden history, which is why I reviewed the following book:

Bryant, Shelly. The Classical Gardens of Shanghai. Hong Kong: Hong Kong University Press, 2016.

To read it please click here to go on newbooks.Asia.
The book is available notably through JSTOR and its publisher HKUPress.

Here is reproduced the short biography for Shelly Bryant available on the HKUPress website:
Shelly Bryant, poet, translator, teacher, researcher, and writer, splits her time between Singapore and Shanghai. She is the author of six poetry collections and two travel guides, and has translated more than ten books from Chinese to English.

Thursday, 6 October 2016

Guest blog at China Policy Institute: on Chinese-style gardens and soft power

Fanghuayuan, Orchid Garden, Guangzhou. Credit Richard, Josepha (2009)

This time I am happy to have a blog post published at the China Policy Institute Analysis blog platform.

The title is "Are Chinese-style gardens built outside of China a form of 'soft power'?" and it was a question I had been wondering about for quite some time. 
Feel free to comment on the original post in order to advance the debate.

The China Policy Institute is a centre of expertise on contemporary China based at the University of Nottingham, UK. Their blog platform, "CPI Analysis" hosts almost daily reflections on diverse aspects of Chinese life, news, politics, economics, etc.

Tuesday, 16 August 2016

CFPapers: Chinese garden and landscape history conference, Fall 2017, Garden History Society/University of Sheffield, UK

Following the success of the "New approaches in Chinese garden history" conference in June 2015, Jan Woudstra of the department of Landscape (University of Sheffield, UK) is helping the Garden History Society to organise another conference on the theme of Gardens and Landscape history of China, to be held at the University of Sheffield in the autumn of 2017.

This initial call for paper has for aim to hear about any ongoing research, and come up with a theme. Speakers would preferably be based in the UK/Europe (because of travel expenses).

Please forward us your abstract of about 300 words before the 25th of September 2016, to: j.richard@sheffield.ac.uk

Monday, 8 August 2016

Guest blog at Visualising China - Documenting gardens of China through early photographs

 Photograph 486, Joseph Rock Collection, Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh. Photo: J. Richard

This time I wrote a guest blog post for the Visualising China blog, about "Documenting gardens of China through early photographs".

"Visualising China is a JISC-funded project to allow users to explore and enhance more than 8000 digitised images of photographs of China taken between 1850 and 1950. It allows access to many previously unseen albums, envelopes and private collections and also major collections such as Historical Photographs of China, the Sir Robert Hart Collection and Joseph Needham's Photographs of Wartime China. These have many sub-collections and albums. We hope you will contribute by using your knowledge to comment on or annotate these images.
Read more about Visualising China"

Tuesday, 19 July 2016

Exploring Johnston's Archives (related to gardens of China) in Needham Institute part 3: Printed maps

Map 1 (Tube2): 北京市什刹海, 历史文化风景区远期规划,古迹分布分析图, December 1989

During the referencing of the Johnston Archives, I came across a number of printed maps (as opposed to the maps drawn by Johnston himself). Some of these are mostly interesting as memorabilia of tourism in China in the 1980-90s and will be treated in a separate post; the present post will review a few others that probably have historical value.

1) The map shown at the top of the article represents the planning of the historical zone of Beijing Shichahai (Beihai, Zhonghai, Nanhai), and could be of interest to urban planners and historians. 北京市什刹海, 历史文化风景区远期规划,古迹分布分析图, December 1989.

2) Specialists might also be interested in the map of Tongli, made in April 1980 (同里缜房屋分佈签 ). Its scale is 1 :1000, and according to my Chinese landscape architect friend was made by computer and hand (a type called 晒图 ). I wonder how it ended up in Johnston's collection as it was probably not something you could get easily as a foreigner at that time.

Map 2 (2016/1): 同里缜房屋分佈签, April 1980

3) Of similar technique is the map of Lili 黎里镇平面图 , scale of 1:5000, (晒图 type). Two dates appear: 1974 & 1982.

Map 3 (2016/1): 黎里镇平面图, 1982

4) A map of Ningbo that could not immediately be dated, titled 宁波市:交通导游图 & on the reverse 城,镇主要街巷图.

Map 4 (2016/1): 宁波市, 城,镇主要街巷图

5) A map of Shaoxing, titled 绍兴旅游交通图

Map 5 (2016/1): 绍兴旅游交通图

6) A map of PRC printed by the PRC cartographic publishing house. Annotation on the map indicates that it was distributed by China reconstructs, data up to 1981 June.

Map 6 (2016/1): Map of PRC, 1981

As usual, if you can provide more information or even corrections from what was presented in this post it is more than welcome. I can also provide closer up photos of the Tongli map, although the best would of course be to visit the Needham Institute.