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China at the Center

China at the Center

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The exhibition China at the Center focused on two masterpieces of 17th-century map-making that illustrate the exchange of information (and misinformation) between Europe and Asia. The world maps created by Jesuit priests Matteo Ricci (1602) and Ferdinand Verbiest (1674) for the Chinese courts tell fascinating stories about the meeting of two worldviews.

They provided Europeans with greater knowledge of China and the Chinese with new ideas about geography, astronomy and the natural sciences. The maps also show the ways that certain myths were perpetuated, especially as seen in the vivid and imaginative descriptions of the peoples and places of the world and in their depictions of exotic fauna.

China at the Center was on view at the Asian Art Museum from March 4 through May 8, 2016.

Additional information:

  • Authors: Natasha Reichle, Antoni J. Ucerler, Theodore N. Foss, Mark Stephen Mir
  • Size: 8" x 10"
  • Pages: 64
  • Paperback
  • Publication: 2016


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