Cityscapes: the Changing Faces of China
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12:00 to 18:00
From 03-05-17 to 14-05-17

A selection of Woodblock Prints from the Muban Educational Trust

Paper and printing were invented some 2,000 years ago in China. Traditional woodblock prints were produced as book illustrations and auspicious New Year prints. In 1920s and 1930s, Chinese writer and thinker Lu Xun introduced Eastern Europe realistic style woodblock prints to China and saw the potential of using the technique as the medium for mass education and propaganda. This inspiration was greatly enhanced from 1940s onwards and printmaking until the late 1970s was dominated by social-realist subject matter. Woodblock printing became an efficient propaganda tool to help the course of the Chinese revolution. With the new political freedom of the 1980s, artists began searching for greater self- expression in their graphic styles and range of subject matter. Some print artists began to reflect a new sense of modernism in the portrayal of urban life and depicting modern buildings, highways, motor transport and the bustle of city life. Some older print artists, for example, Chen Qi and Yang Keyang, put aside the socialist realist subjects of the past and to adopt a new modernist voice. Other younger artists present urban life with extreme realism and some use a semi-abstract approach. In this small exhibition, enjoy viewing modern examples of woodblock printing that reflect this shift in inspiration and style.

The exhibition celebrates both London Craft Week 2017 and China in Context.

The exhibition will be open at the following times:

Noon-6pm Wednesday 3 May

Noon-6pm Thursday 4 May

Noon-6pm Friday 5 May

Noon-6pm Monday 8 May

Noon-6pm Tuesday 9 May

Noon-6pm Wednesday 10 May

Noon-6pm Thursday 11 May

11am-8pm Friday 12 May

11am-8pm Saturday 13 May

11am-8pm Sunday 14 May


The Muban Educational Trust

The Muban Educational Trust, previous known as the Muban Foundation, is a small, non-profit making organisation based in London. It is dedicated to raise the profile of contemporary Chinese printmaking in the West, and to re-vitalize the field in contemporary China. “Muban” means “woodblock” in Chinese. MET’s permanent collection comprises over 6500 Chinese woodblock prints spanning hundreds of years, with outstanding holdings from the 20th century. A major project initiated by the MET has been the commissioning and publication of a Portfolio of prints by 60 artists. The Portfolio is available for sale as a set and it provides a great opportunity to museums, institutions and collectors to acquire sixty original woodblock prints as a set.

Visit the Muban Educational Trust website for more information: