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Canton, Kwangtung (Guangdong) province, China: a young woman. Photograph by John Thomson, 1869.

  • Thomson, J. (John), 1837-1921.
Date
1869
Reference
19606i
  • Pictures

Selected images from this work


About this work

Description

A young woman, wearing a fine silk robe, holding an open decorated fan in her right hand, standing before a folding screen with painted decoration of birds and foliage. Both the fan and screen are in the chinoiserie style: since the 18th century, a large number of these types of Chinese-style objects had been produced in the Pearl River Delta area exclusively for the European market. This woman has a slight 'non-Chinese' look about her. As noted by Thomson, some of the Chinese he encountered in this part of China had pale skins, finely formed features and large lustrous eyes, which suggested they might not be of 'purely Chinese blood'

Publication/Creation

1869

Physical description

1 photograph : glass photonegative, wet collodion

Lettering

Canton lady

Notes

This is one of a collection of original glass negatives made by John Thomson. The negatives, made between 1868 and 1872, were purchased from Thomson by Sir Henry Wellcome in 1921

References note

Paisarn Piemmettawat, Siam through the lens of John Thomson 1865-66, including Angkor and coastal China, Bangkok: River Books, 2015, p. 136
China through the lens of John Thomson, 1868-1872, Beijing: Beijing World Art Museum, 2009, p. 125 (reproduced)

Lettering note

Bears Thomson's negative number: "682"

Reference

Wellcome Library no. 19606i

Languages

  • English


Where to find it

  • LocationStatusAccess
    Closed stores
    By appointmentManual request

    Note

    This item needs to be accessed in our conservation studio. Please consult the digitised version. Email library@wellcomecollection.org to request an appointment

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