Rockbund Art Museum 上海外滩美术馆

Shanghai Palimpsest: Restaging the R.A.S. Library 覆写上海:重构20世纪初的亚洲文会图书馆

23 March 2024 – 25 August 2024
2024年 3月 23日 – 2024年 8月 25日

Shanghai Palimpsest: Restaging the R.A.S.Library is an archive-based exhibition exploring the historical Royal Asiatic Society (R.A.S.)by reflecting on the importance of the building's third-floor space, once known as "the finest library of Oriental studies within China."It also brings to light the noteworthy figures associated with the Society in early 20th-century Shanghai. Through archival research and critical reflection on how archives are constructed and interpreted, Shanghai Palimpsest potrays the past not as a linear chronicle or a singular entity, but as a mosaic of intersecting experiences, voices, and perspectives. Besides showcasing primary source materials, this exhibition features site-specific interventions by artist Zhang Ruyi and a series of lantern slides by photographer Chen Ronghui, inspired by a lost archive. Originating in the mid-19th century amidst imperial expansion, the R.A.S. emerged as a powerhouse for sinology (the study of China)and functioned as an imperial archive. It documented, categorized, and showcased the culture and nature of Asia, with China as its primary subject. The exhibition's curatorial approach focuses on historical archives, especially those rediscovered, illuminating obscure stories and reinterpreting familiar ones. Notable figures like Arthur de Carle Sowerby and John Calvin Ferguson share the stage with relatively lesser-known personalities, including Florence Ayscough, Wu Lien-teh, the Tang family, and Clarice Moise. The project fosters an examination of established accounts and amplifies underrepresented voices, underscoring the palimpsestic nature of archives — a metaphorical layering that captures the essence of temporal shifts, narrative diversities, and interpretative variances.

“覆写上海:重构20世纪初的亚洲文会图书馆”通 过反思曾被称为“中国最好的东方学图书馆”的三楼 空间来探索历史上的亚洲文会(R.A.S.) 。 展览展示了 二十世纪初与文会有关的几位杰出人物。通过文献研 究及对文献的构建和解读进行批判性思考,“覆写上 海”拒绝将过去作为线性编年史或单一实体来呈现, 而是将其作为不同经验、声音和视角相互交织的镶嵌体。除了展出一手文献资料外,本展览还特别呈现了 艺术家张如怡为回应该项目所创作的特定场地介入作 品,以及摄影师陈荣辉以曾经的文会下落不明的视觉 档案为灵感所创作的一系列幻灯片。

起源于十九世纪中叶的帝国扩张时期,亚洲文会成为了汉学的权威机构,并扮演帝国档案馆的角色。除了传播西方知识,文会主要对以中国为主的亚洲文化 和自然进行记录、分类和展示。此次重构的图书馆空 间关注历史档案、尤其是重新发现的档案,发掘不为人知的故事,并对原本为人们熟知的叙事进行重新解读。展览力求呈现二十世纪上半叶亚洲文会中具有多元背景和身份性的人物:其中既有声名显赫的苏阿德 (Arthur de Carle Sowerby) 和福开森 (John Calvin Ferguson), 亦有相对来说较少为大众所知的爱诗客 (Florence Ayscough)、伍连德 (Wu Lien-teh) 、 “标本”唐家和克拉丽斯·莫伊斯 (Clarice Moise)。该项目彰显了文献的覆写属性——隐喻意义上的叠层捕捉到时间的变迁、叙事多元化和解读性差异,鼓励大家反省既定叙事,并放大边缘化的声音。

installation views 展览现场