- Museum number
- Object: Designs of Chinese Buildings, Furniture, Dresses, Machines, and Utensils
Volume of twenty-one plates with accompanying text. 1757
Etching, with letterpress
- Production date
Height: 458 millimetres (each plate approx)
Width: 304 millimetres
- Curator's comments
- As a young man Chambers travelled to Bengal (1740-42) and China (1743 and 1748-49) in the service of the Swedish East India Company. In 1755, he settled in London and two years later produced this handsome volume of Chinese designs based on drawings of buildings and other sights he had observed. He was able to promote himself as having unique knowledge of a fashionable subject - no other British architect had visited China. Also in 1757 Chambers published an essay on garden design in which he advocated what he saw as a Chinese method of subtle improvement on nature. His theories on landscape gardening - promoting variety and contrast - were further developed in his "Dissertation on Oriental Gardening", 1772.
For a preliminary drawing for Plate XXI, see 1962,0714.19.
- Not on display
- Exhibition history
2007 Mar-Jun, Beijing, Palace Museum, Britain meets the World
- Acquisition date
- Prints and Drawings
- Registration number