The Hanlin Academy

This painting was created to commemorate the banquet given by Emperor Qianlong in 1744, on the occasion of the architectural renovation of Hanlin Academy, one of the fundamental institutions of Imperial China.

The calligraphy that adorns the composition is the work of three senior officials who transcribed the poems composed during this festive day.

The painting, for its part, required the intervention of six artists, all members of the Imperial Academy of Painting.
Within this court production, the work stands out for its monumental format and complex perspective.

Hanlin Academy stood near the Imperial Palace and the Tiananmen Gate, visible at the top left of the painting. This work is undoubtedly the most faithful image of this architectural ensemble which has now disappeared, the academy having been largely destroyed during the Boxer War.


Jin Kun (active 1717-1749), Sun Hu (active 1728-1746), Lu Zhan, Wu Yu, Zhang Qi, Cheng Liang
The Hanlin Academy, 1744-1745
Ink and colors on silk
Qing dynasty (1644-1911)
193,5 × 625,5 cm
MC 9484

Gift of the Society of Friends of the Cernuschi Museum, 1975

Photo credit :
© Paris Museums / Cernuschi Museum


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