Under the Dragon’s Claw

Court Costumes of the Qing Dynasty (1644 -1911)

5 November 2004 - 20 February 2005


To celebrate the 40th anniversary of the opening of the Museum, and following the inauguration of its Japanese garden, the Baur Collections are proud to present, in collaboration with the Ethnographical Museum of Geneva, an exhibition of 19th-century Chinese court costumes.

The exhibition is divided into four sections and begins with a loan of early woodblock-printed books from the Guimet Museum in Paris which illustrate the manufacture of silk and the cultivation of cotton in China, as well as English and French works relating the discovery of Chinese costumes by the Europeans in the 18th and 19th centuries.

The second part presents the costumes of the civil servants at the Imperial court, as well as those of their wives, which are decorated with strictly codified motifs serving as insignia of rank and position.

The third section deals with the court costumes of the Emperor and imperial princes, along with various decorative objects and fabrics for furniture marked with the imperial dragon, emblem of the Son of Heaven.

The last section presents the sumptuously embroidered clothes and various accessories worn by Manchu and Chinese women, including coats and wide dresses, skirts and jackets, as well as jade and amber pendants, fans and mirrors.

The exhibition continues on the first floor with a presentation of Manchu dresses.