First Exhibition of the Earliest Photographs of Chinese Women

Portrait of a Woman
Photographer in China, 1870s, albumen silver print

Dragon Women: Early Chinese Photography

Opening Reception: March 15,  6pm to 9pm

On view March 14 – May 15, 2024
10 West 18th Street 7th Floor, New York
Open by appointment only: 646-838-4576 or 410-602-3002

Rare early photographs of Chinese women from the Loewentheil Photography of China Collection will be exhibited for the first time in New York as part of Asia Week New York. Dragon Women: Early Chinese Photography curated by Stacey Lambrow runs from March 14th – May 15th 2024. Admission is free.

Dragon Women: Early Chinese Photography celebrates the Year of the Dragon and the representation of women in the earliest photography of China. This is the first exhibition devoted to the depiction of Chinese women in early photography. The over 50 photographs selected from the Loewentheil Collection include the first photographic portraits of Chinese women, most made in the 1860s and 1870s. Many have never before been shown. The exhibition examines women’s place in society in the late Qing dynasty and their depiction in historical photography of China. It also presents work by the few known early female photographers of China.

Highlights include a rare photograph by the first known Chinese female photographer, Mae Linda Talbot, and works by Hedda Morrison, Isabella Bird, and Eva Sandberg Xiao. Masterworks include photographs by Chinese and international artists such as Sze Yuen Ming Studio, Pun Lun Studio, A Chan Studio, Lai Fong, John Thomson, and Thomas Child. The exhibition showcases the diversity of Chinese women and their experiences during the final decades of imperial China.


Rare Photographs by Late Qing Dynasty Chinese Masters