Category: Decorative Art & Handicrafts, China
The East Asian Library's Collection The East Asian Library of the University of California, Berkeley has 2,700 Chinese rubbings, second in number among collections outside East Asia only to the Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago. The nucleus of the collection, over half of the items, was acquired in 1950 from the estate of Mitsui Soken, a wealthy Japanese bibliophile, and includes albums of rubbings once owned by noted Chinese connoisseurs of the nineteenth century. Other important acquisitions were made through purchases from Chinese scholars and dealers and through the bequest of Professor Woodbridge Bingham's collection. The library's holdings are especially rich in albums of models of calligraphy and bronze inscriptions.
The Fine Arts Library currently houses 2,602 individual East Asian rubbings, the majority of which are from China. The rubbings were made from ancient stone stelae, tomb tablets, Buddhist and Daoist scriptures on stelae and rocks, as well as inscriptions and designs copied from bronze vessels, jade objects, ceramics, tomb bricks, and roof tiles, objects dating from the Qin Dynasty (221-207 BCE) to the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644 CE).
Chinese Paper Gods Collection Essays The images in this collection were assembled by Anne S. Goodrich (1895–2005) in 1931, when as a Christian missionary in Peking she became interested in local folk religious practices. She studied the paper gods in this collection for much of her life. After publishing her research conclusions in 1991, she donated these prints to the C. V. Starr East Asian Library, Columbia University. The images are divided initially by usage: Those which were purchased to be burned immediately and serve as emissaries to heaven; and those which were purchased to be displayed for a year while offering protection to the family in a variety of ways, before being burned. The images are further divided by display locations and by the deities they represent.