A small bottle with an orange stopper. On the front, it has a black and white image of an old Chinese man with a long white beard wearing a skull-cap.

Curator's introduction to
China’s hidden century

Online events / Lectures & discussions / 1 Jun 2023


Event information

1 Jun 2023


Online event


Please note this is an online event and will require you to use the video conferencing system Zoom.

These events are free but donations are greatly appreciated.

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Join curators Jessica Harrison-Hall and Julia Lovell as they introduce the context, scope, themes and highlight objects of the extraordinary Citi exhibition, China's hidden century.

Between 1796 and 1912, Qing China endured numerous civil uprisings and foreign wars, with revolution ultimately bringing an end to some 2,000 years of dynastic rule and giving way to a modern Chinese republic. This period was also one of extraordinary creativity, driven by political, cultural and technological change. Amid the devastation, new art forms flourished, as Harrison-Hall and Lovell explain.

To attend this online event

Book now to secure your place. We're hosting the event on Zoom – a free video conferencing system that requires users to register in advance. If you do not already use Zoom, you can sign up using this registration link.

If the event is fully booked, or you do not wish to use Zoom, you can also watch the event – as well as other events in the series – streamed on the Museum's events YouTube channel.

This event includes live captioning provided by Stagetext and delivered by MyClearText.

Read our booking form privacy policy.

About the speakers

Jessica Harrison-Hall is Head of the China Section, Curator of the Sir Percival David Collection and of Chinese Decorative Arts at the British Museum. She is currently co-leading, with Julia Lovell, a UKRI AHRC project, Cultural Creativity in Qing China, 1796–1912. They have edited two books – China's Hidden Century and Creators of Modern China 100 lives from empire to republic 1796-1912 (2023) – working with 100 scholars. She is also author of China: A History in Objects (2017) and is an expert on the Ming dynasty.

Julia Lovell

Julia Lovell is Professor of Modern Chinese History and Literature in the Department of History, Classics and Archaeology at Birkbeck College, University of London. Her many books include The Politics of Cultural Capital (2006), The Great Wall (2006), The Opium War: Drugs, Dreams and the Making of China (2011); Splendidly Fantastic: Architecture and Power Games in China (2012) and Maoism: A Global History (2019). She is currently co-investigator with the British Museum on an AHRC-funded project, Cultural Creativity in Qing China, 1796–1912.

Privacy policy

Privacy policy

The personal data you provide to us on the event booking form is being collected so that we can administer the event efficiently and, if necessary, contact you with important updates about the event. It will only be used by the British Museum for this purpose, it will not be shared with any third parties and it will be securely deleted as soon as the event has ended. This privacy information does not apply to the processing of your personal data by Zoom which will be governed by the terms of the agreement made between you and Zoom when you subscribed to their service.