Court Ladies
Jiao BingZhen (Chiao Ping-chen)
, Qing Dynasty 1689-1726
National Palace Museum, Taipei

Chiao Ping-chen [Jiao BingZhen], a native of Shantung, served in the Directorate of Astronomy at court, where he worked with Europeans. He came in contact with European painting styles, which influenced the rendering of figural and architectural subjects in Ch'ing court art. This album of 8 leaves depicts the leisurely life of court ladies during the four seasons. The architectural elements are rendered with perspective and proportion, adding depth to the scenes. The use of shading for the faces and hands of the ladies clearly shows that Chiao was the first painter under the K'ang-hsi Emperor (r. 1662-1722) to combine the modes of Western and Chinese styles in his works.

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