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Selling Happiness: Calendar Posters and Visual Culture in Early-Twentieth-Century Shanghai

Selling Happiness: Calendar Posters and Visual Culture in Early-Twentieth-Century Shanghai Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

From the early twentieth century until the Communist takeover in 1949, Shanghai commercial artists created thousands of colorful posters and black and white advertisements that formed an essential part of modern life in the city. This visually appealing and richly illustrated work describes the origin and evolution of modern commercial art in China, focusing on colorful advertisement calendar posters that featured distinctive feminine images. It makes clear how essential commercial art and its institutional backing were to the development of modern art and even modern society in China over the past century. Selling Happiness discusses not only advertising art but also the production and marketing of the calendar poster. These posters, like other advertisements, were rendered in a Western realistic technique and were wildly and widely popular. Ordinary people throughout China often acquired them to decorate their homes. Laing outlines how the Chinese commercial artist, who rarely attended formal Western art classes, gained skills in Western representational art. In the final chapter of the book, she explains how the styles developed by the commercial poster artists during the 1920s and 1930s became the basis for certain types of propaganda art under the Chinese Communists in the 1950s and 1960s.

Book News Annotation:

Laing considers the origin and evolution of modern commercial art in China. Her analysis focuses on the colorful advertisement calendar posters created by artists working in Shanghai during the first half of the twentieth century. Drawing upon a wide range of written sources and private art collections, she provides biographies for 11 major commercial artists and examines the relationships between the marketing and publishing industries. The text is accompanied throughout by b&w artistic reproductions. The author is a research associate at the U. of Michigan's Center for Chinese Studies.
Annotation ©2004 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)

Product Details

ISBN:
9780824827649
Publisher:
University of Hawaii Press
Location:
Honolulu
Author:
Laing, Ellen Johnston
Subject:
General
Subject:
Advertising
Subject:
Commercial art
Subject:
Calendars
Subject:
Posters, Chinese
Subject:
Graphic Arts - General
Subject:
World History - China
Edition Description:
Includes bibliographical references and index.
Series Volume:
2
Publication Date:
20040831
Binding:
Hardcover
Language:
English
Illustrations:
Y
Pages:
360
Dimensions:
10.32x7.22x.97 in. 2.29 lbs.

Related Subjects

Arts and Entertainment » Art » Museums and Collections
History and Social Science » World History » China

Selling Happiness: Calendar Posters and Visual Culture in Early-Twentieth-Century Shanghai
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Product details 360 pages University of Hawaii Press - English 9780824827649 Reviews:
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