Telling Images of China

Narrative and Figure Paintings 15th–20th Century from the Shanghai Museum

Shane McCausland, Ling Lizhong

    ISBN: 978 1 85759 604 5

    Size: 280 x 240 mm / 9.5 x 11 in.

    Binding: Paperback

    Pages: 160

    In association with:

    Date published: February, 2001

    UK £25 /US $45


  • Superb selection of narrative figure paintings from 15th–20th century, explained and elucidated by world experts in the field
  • The Telling Images of China exhibition is due to open in January 2010 at the Chester Beatty Library, Dublin


Telling Images of China is an exhibition of early modern and modern paintings from one of the world’s finest collections of Chinese art – the Shanghai Museum. The 38 figural works were selected by a team of curators, including Professor Shan Guolin and Mr Ling Lizhong of the Shanghai Museum, and Dr Shane McCausland of the Chester Beatty Library, Dublin. They include scrolls and albums by artists – both pre-eminent and obscure – active in the Ming (1368-1644) and Qing (1644-1911) dynasties, and the 20th century. These narrative or ‘story paintings’, an emerging topic in Asian art history, retell or illustrate tales of some kind. The sources range across folk and religious lore, oral and official history, and poetry and literature. This book, co-authored by Shane McCausland and Ling Lizhong, presents a series of interpretive essays and descriptions of these paintings, accompanied by full-colour illustrations and many details.

Author information

Dr Shane McCausland is a lecturer in Chinese art in the Department of Art and Archaeology at the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London. Between 2004 and 2009, he was Head of Collections at the Chester Beatty Library in Dublin. Mr Ling Lizhong is Associate Professor in the Department of Painting and Calligraphy at the Shanghai Museum.