November 12, 2017- March 11, 2018
Empress Dowager Cixi (1835-1908) stands in the center of modern Chinese history. While most commonly understood as a politician, this formidable matriarch was also introduced to Western audience or reader as a connoisseur, patron and even creator of art in the early twentieth century, a phenomenon that interestingly fell unnoticed in modern scholarship.
This exhibition is the first of its kind in the United States to explore the empress dowager’s roles beyond politics. It has been organized through a groundbreaking partnership with the Summer Palace Museum in Beijing. Upon viewing this exhibition, it will become clear that Cixi not only led politics, but also art of China at the crossroads of tradition and innovation. The exhibition reconstructs the matriarch’s everyday life in the Summer Palace, presenting her multi-faceted roles of politician, matriarch and connoisseur of various arts through four different sections and over 100 objects that have never before been seen in the United States.
“H.I.M The Empress Dowager of China, Cixi”
戴泽 after the original by Hubert Vos, 1905