Chih-En ChenPhD Candidate, Department of the History of Art and Archaeology at SOAS
Chih-En Chen’s research specialises in Chinese ceramics in the 18th century in China. He has published internationally, including articles in the CCFA Journal (Taipei), Cultural World Relics (Beijing), and Les Cahiers de Framespa (Toulouse),
Feminine Space and Playthings: Recontextualization of Trompe l’Oeil Porcelain in High Qing China
Chih-En Chen is the recipient of our prestigious George de Menasce Memorial Trust Award.
Chih-En Chen’s research fills the gap in the historiography of Qing porcelain manufacture and the survey of Europeanerie in 18th century China. Existing scholarships are problematic while considering the Qing trompe l’oeil porcelain and the related connoisseurship in a scenario of de-contextualization. Through Chenshedang’an and Qianziwenhao indicating the original location of the artefacts from the Qing Imperial Household Department, kept in the NPM and the Palace Museum, re-contextualization of Qing trompe l’oeil porcelain may become possible. A trip funded by Oriental Ceramic Society through the George de Menasce award to the Palace Museum will ensure the collection of the Qianziwenhao data. Professor Huang Weiwen at the museum will provide access to the archives. Ultimately redefining the origin and the classification of Qing trompe l’oeil art, the present research is promising for its potential contributions to enriching the studies of the East/West exchange. Furthermore, the unprecedented ideology of trompe l’oeil art as wanqi (trinket) will be discussed in order to understand not only the distinct purpose of commissioning artefacts but also the differentiated connoisseurship between the emperors and the women living within the imperial precinct