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Working paper

Chinese Export Painting in the Collection of the National Library of Russia

Alferova N., Tarasenko A. V.
Throughout history Chinese artistic culture has developed a fairly complex system of diverse art forms and styles. Chinese export art, being created particularly to satiate constantly growing appetite of the Western world for Chinese goods, holds a specific place among them. In spite of being considered as insignificant in terms of artistic merits, nevertheless, Chinese export painting succeeded to cover a modest segment in the European market in the XVIII – XIX centuries. Unlike most other types of Chinese decorative and applied arts, Chinese export painting until recently has never been taken as a subject of scientific research. The collection of the National Library of Russia possesses a number of Chinese painting albums. Comprehensive study of these art works might bridge lacunas for research of other multitudinous kinds of Chinese export arts and crafts of the XVIII-XIX centuries.