examines the meanings behind the hundreds of common motifs and symbols found in all forms of Chinese art, exposing their linguistic, metaphoric or historic origins, common usage, and diverse applications. Plants, flowers, real and imaginary animals and birds, reptiles, fish and amphibians, colors, numbers, and a myriad of inanimate images and personages communicate auspicious and benevolent messages in the Chinese vocabulary of decorative art. Many of the symbols are easily recognizable, and thanks to China's love of the past, reappear almost continuously.
A perfect reference for collectors, museum-goers, docents, students of Chinese art, and anyone else with a serious interest in the culture and history of China, the book includes both Chinese and Pinyin text, over 630 illustrations (including references to on-line collections), an extensive index in both Chinese and English, a bibliography, and a list of recommended museums and other places to visit with interesting collections of Chinese art.
Patricia Bjaaland Welch, MA, is a former lecturer in Chinese philosophy and art at Boston University, and has been a docent for over two decades in prominent museums in Boston, Bangkok, and Singapore. She has written several in-house training manuals for docents and is passionate about bringing people into museums and helping them to appreciate what they are seeing. She is a frequent lecturer on subjects relating to Chinese art and history. An avid collector and researcher, she is also the author of five published works, including Chinese New Year. She currently lives in Singapore.