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Chinese Rubbings

DATES February 19, 1943 through March 28, 1943
ORGANIZING DEPARTMENT Asian Art
COLLECTIONS Asian Art
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  • February 18, 1943 To-day the Brooklyn Museum opens to the public an exhibition of Chinese rubbings in the Special Exhibitions Gallery, first floor. The exhibition will be current through Sunday, March 28.

    Though the majority of the rubbings are in black and white, there also are shown many in colored ink on white paper. In point of time the stones, from which these ink squeezes were taken, date from the Han Dynasty (206 B.C.-220 A.D.) to the present century. The subject matter includes calligraphy, landscapes, figures, animals and flowers.

    Also exhibited is a case containing the paraphernalia used by the Chinese in making rubbings: silk covered stamping pads, ink blocks, ink dishes, and absorbent paper.

    The papers exhibited are from collections of private individuals, the Fogg Museum of Art and the Brooklyn Museum.

    Rubbing, the ancestor of Chinese printing, was first employed for the reproduction in volume of religious charms and the Confucian texts, the latter having been carved on stones by order of the Emperor to preserve their purity form posthumous accretions. Later rubbings were taken of paintings which had been copied on stone to assure their preservation. Though rubbings have long been valued by the Chinese, it is only in recent years that Occidental scholars have become aware of their research and their artistic values.

    Brooklyn Museum Archives. Records of the Department of Public Information. Press releases, 1942 - 1946. 01-03/1943, 029.
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