Pun Lun Studio
Woman and Child
29 cm x 22 cm
A highlight of the Loewentheil Collection is its large selection of works by the Pun Lun Studio, a leading Chinese photography studio in Hong Kong. The studio was active from 1864 through the turn of the twentieth century with branches in Foochow (Fuzhou), Saigon, and Singapore. Pun Lun Studio’s early work is particularly rare because the studio’s negatives appear to have been destroyed in a studio fire in 1876. In addition to the portrait and topographical work, Pun Lun Studios assembled a series of genre photographs of life in China, a format that came out of the Chinese painting tradition.
This is a skillfully composed portrait of a woman carrying a child on her back. Though the Pun Lun Studio was a large and successful studio, most of the photographs attributed to the studio are small carte de visite portraits. This large-format masterpiece from Pun Lun’s genre series is a rare survival.