Chinese School 
Canton Warehouse on the Pearl River
⚈ Sold
Chinese (1775-1900)

Oil on Canvas Circa 1850
17 ? x 30 ½ Inches 25 x 38 Inches Framed
 
   

Chinese School 
 
Chinese (1775-1900)
 
Canton Warehouse on the Pearl River
⚈ Sold

Oil on Canvas Circa 1850
17 ? x 30 ½ Inches 25 x 38 Inches Framed
 
   

Sought by collectors worldwide, art and artifacts showing an early western presence in the Orient boomed with the opening of the China Trade by way of the sailing ship. The surviving paintings which capture the important Chinese harbors of the 18th and 19th Centuries with western merchants are at the top of such a list of desirable items.

Showing the American, British, French and Danish flags over their respective factory houses, the Pearl River traffic bustles beneath the shore of Canton city’s edge. Foreign merchants and captains had to anchor off Whampoa, down the river, and travel by junk, sampan or other transport operated by the local mariners, using a wide variety of propulsion, as shown. No firearms, women and very few average crewmen were allowed to travel upriver to Canton.

This example, showing great coloration, represents the height of the international tea trade and the period of record sailings by the clipper ships. Note the shoreline’s wealth of trees and foliage between the hongs and river, mostly planted in the 1840s by an American indemnity fund company. A second great Canton fire in 1856 destroyed most of this area, never to be fully rebuilt. At this point, there is even a Western church before the British factory, at the end of Hog’s Road, which was built in 1847. The largest sampan in the foreground has an intricately signed flag, which may well identify further clues about the artist, while others men do business onboard the Chinese ships and within the Western buildings.


Inscribed LC: Canton