Published by Bernard Quaritch Ltd., London, August 2009
230 x 238 mm, 242 pages, over 150 illustrations, most of which are reproductions from original photographs
The first comprehensive history of the earliest years of photography in China, combining previously unpublished research with over 150 photographs, many of which are attributed and published here for the first time.
describes the way in which the discovery of photography in China was
framed against the tumultuous backdrop of the Opium Wars, the Taiping
Rebellion and the opening of numerous treaty ports to foreign trade.
From 1842, when the use of a camera was first recorded in China, foreign
and Chinese photographers captured the people, places and events of
this unsettled period. They were professional portraitists, soldiers and
pioneering amateurs, among them: Jules Itier; Pierre Rossier; Lo
Yuanyou (the earliest-recorded Chinese commercial photographer); Felix
Beato; and Milton Miller. The author, an acclaimed international
authority on historical photographs from China, Japan and Korea, sheds
new light on the unique historical value of these photographs.
The images are drawn from institutional and private collections from all over the world. The text includes extensive documentary notes, valuable listings of early stereoviews of China and biographies of more than forty photographers working in China up to 1860. It also introduces important new detail on the life of Felix Beato.