Exhibition gallery


China: Through the Lens of John Thomson



September 19, 2015–February 14, 2016

In the second half of the 19th century, Scottish photographer and travel writer John Thomson took four journeys across China. His photographs capture scenes and people from all walks of life—ministers, high officials, wealthy traders, street vendors, brides, boat women, monks, and soldiers—providing a lasting record of nineteenth-century China’s landscapes, architecture, communities, and customs. This exhibition presented a stunning selection of Thomson’s photographs displayed alongside contemporaneous pieces from The Textile Museum’s collection of Qing-Dynasty textiles and accessories. Read the gallery guide for China: Through the Lens of John Thomson.

This exhibition and related programming were made possible through support from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Coby Foundation, the E. Rhodes and Leona B. Carpenter Foundation, and the Council for International Cooperation, Washington D.C.