Following the two online exhibitions, "The Common Folks behind the Vermilion Walls" and "The Masterpieces behind the Vermilion Walls", which gave interesting humanistic insights into the talented people and ingeniously crafted items of the Forbidden City, the Art Promotion Office of the Leisure and Cultural Services Department continues to collaborate with the Department of Fine Arts of The Chinese University of Hong Kong to present yet another online exhibition under the "Vermilion Walls" series – "Sentiments and Sensibilities behind the Vermilion Walls". Guided by their professors, postgraduate students of the university, together with the curatorial team of Art Promotion Office, have worked on the sorting, compilation and interpretation of the Palace Museum treasures from a whole new perspective to affirm once again that art was – and is – very much a part of everyday life.
With the prevalence of social media and communications technology, many people today – ordinary citizens or prominent figures in society alike – do not hesitate to share their daily lives and express their joys and sorrows. Yet, in China centuries ago, behind the vermilion walls of the Forbidden City, how did the imperial family show their emotions or reveal their more complicated sensibilities under a complex web of interests and power relations, where traditional values dictated that personal feelings should be restrained in keeping with the rites?
The online exhibition "Sentiments and Sensibilities behind the Vermilion Walls" will look at the underlying emotions in four relationships in the imperial family: the familial love between the young and the old, the romantic love between husband and wife, as well as the sentiments between ruler and minister and between tutor and student. Perhaps we will discover that the emotions that emerged in the face of mortality and the vicissitudes of life behind the vermilion walls were just as similar to those beyond, which were ever-changing yet perennial.
Please visit other online exhibitions of the "Traversing the Forbidden City" series:
The Common Folks behind the Vermilion Walls
Masterpieces behind the Vermilion Walls