Chinese Jade Miniatures from Four Millennia
The magic and fascination of Chinese jade objects outstandingly presented in photographs
1st edition, 2022
Text in English and German
128 pages, 63 color illustrations
23.5 x 31 cm
In cooperation with the Museum Rietberg, Zurich
Luminous, with a silken glow and soft to the touch, yet harder than steel, created by nature and shaped by human hand: no other material has been more highly valued in China for millennia than jade. Since humanity’s earliest days, magical properties have been attributed to the mineral. As a burial gift it confers immortality and is said to improve health when given as medicine, as a talisman it bestows good fortune and protection. It is hardly surprising that jade objects became sought-after collectibles as early as the 10th century.
Zurich’s Museum Rietberg is home to an exquisite collection of Chinese jade objects spanning four millennia. In his striking images, Zurich-based photographer Felix Streuli brings them to life and makes them glow. The images reveal the most intricate details and make these works of art almost tangible to the viewer. This book features around sixty of Streuli's outstanding photographs, supplemented with concise texts on the objects they show and an introduction to the history of Chinese jade art. Interspersed short stories and poems revolving around the mythical gemstone and a reflection on the photographer’s gaze round out this carefully designed picture book.
Alexandra von Przychowski is a scholar of art history and sinology and curator of Chinese art at the Museum Rietberg in Zurich.
Felix Streuli is a Zurich-based freelance photographer. The photographic staging of art objects is a special focus of his work, which has received numerous awards and has been shown in exhibitions internationally.
Markus Rottmann is a freelance writer and creative director. He writes for film, theater, publishing houses, and museums, and also works as a scenographer for exhibitions.