China Seminar | 11 February 2010

Genuine or Fake? Establishing Authenticity in Traditional Chinese Painting

Stephen Little Stephen Little

How does one determine a genuine from a fake Chinese painting? The question has confounded Chinese artists, collectors, and connoisseurs for centuries. This lecture examines some of the key issues and techniques involved in the art of connoisseurship.   Stephen Little is Director of the Honolulu Academy of Arts. An authority on Chinese and Japanese art, he received his B.A. from Cornell University (1975), M.A. from U.C.L.A. (1977), and Ph.D. from Yale University (1987). He was a curator at the Asian Art Museum of San Francisco (1977-1982), the Cleveland Museum of Art (1987-1989), the Honolulu Academy of Arts (1989-1994), and The Art Institute of Chicago (1995-2002) before becoming the Academy’s Director in 2003.   His research interests include Chinese and Japanese painting, Chinese calligraphy, Chinese ceramics, the classical arts of Southeast Asia, and European Old Master paintings. His publications include Chinese Ceramics of the Transitional Period (1983), Spirit Stones of China (1999), and Taoism and the Arts of China (2000).   Between 2003-2008 he led an international team that organized the first exhibition to explore the Vajrayana Buddhist culture of Bhutan: The Dragon’s Gift: The Sacred Arts of Bhutan; the exhibition is now traveling to four cities in Europe.