Palace cat pays a visit to the painting restoration room.

A Spring Outing.

The outlines of the mountains were painted with a brush, while the mountains themselves were painted with pigments from azurite and malachite.

The foot of the mountains was painted with coating material made out of powdered gold or other metal.

Much of the mineral pigments have darkened.

How to recover the painting’s original colours is a tricky task.

The back of the painting is already covered with a few thousand slips of paper, from past restorations.

They have to choose which of the slips to keep, and which ones to remove.

If they remove the wrong strips, the front of the painting will be affected.

Before restoration

After restoration

Mr Zhang’s grandfather and father both were art restorers.

Another part of painting restoration has to do with the seal used by the painter upon completion of the painting.

This was the seal used by Empress Dowager Cixi.

Mr Shen Wei is currently the only expert on painting seals in the museum.

The Lanting Xu, written by the famous calligrapher Wang Xizhi more than 1,600 years ago, has 148 seals on it.

It seems like each member of staff here has planted something. Mr Shen has tomatoes and eggplant growing in the courtyard outside his office.

This is an Arhat, drawn by Ding Guanpeng of the Qing Dynasty.

Ding was an imperial court painter.

There are seventeen pieces to the entire painting.

Counterdrawing work has been underway for several years.

Copying paintings and calligraphy by tracing them onto a transparent material is another way of preserving the artwork.

清明上河图—Along the River During the Qingming Festival, one of the most famous paintings in China.

It was painted by Song Dynasty artist Zhang Zeduan. This is his only extant work.

The entire painting is 5 metres long. It depicts over 500 people (another theory says it’s 1,000)f and numerous animals, as well as vehicles, and buildings.

This is a reproduction done by Ms Feng. It took her ten years.

A guest from Germany views the restored painting.

He’s fascinated by the painting depicting the 80th birthday of Emperor Qianlong’s mother.

After one painting is done, the next painting is already waiting.

This young woman was an imperial consort of Emperor Qianlong.

This portrait was done by an Italian missionary named Giuseppe Castiglione, who served as an artist at the court of Emperors Kangxi, Yongzheng, and Qianlong.

Petting the palace cats is a common activity.

Working hours at the Palace Museum are 8 to 5.

Overtime is not allowed except under usual circumstances.

The staff have to lock seven doors before leaving.

Their hard work has paid off.

2015, the year of the 90th anniversary of the Palace Museum, 15 million people visited the museum. And that was after a restriction on the daily number of visits was imposed.

The paintings and calligraphy gallery was extremely popular.

We can’t go back in time to 2015 to witness the grand exhibition, but you can still catch a glimpse of some of the items on display in this video.

The end


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