Yin Yu Tang: The Architecture and Daily Life of a Chinese House

Yin Yu Tang: The Architecture and Daily Life of a Chinese House

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by Nancy Berliner
     
 

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Noted author/curator Nancy Berliner guides the reader through the impressive new exhibit at the Peabody Essex Museum

Overview

Noted author/curator Nancy Berliner guides the reader through the impressive new exhibit at the Peabody Essex Museum

Editorial Reviews

The New York Times
… it is the profoundly moving saga of the Huang family, generations of whom lived and died in Yin Yu Tang, that raises this above a routine preservation success story. The many woes that have racked China and its resilient people over centuries cannot but arouse our empathy for the valiant Huangs, whose ancestral residence became a palimpsest of those wider tribulations. Their touching and uplifting stories, told in the first person through letters, diaries and interviews, confirm how the psychic relationship between house and home is by far the most elemental function of architecture. — Martin Filler
Library Journal
The 200-year-old Huang family home called Yin Yu Tang (referring to a hall of shelter and abundance) was originally located in China, in Huang Cun village. It is now preserved with other historic buildings and open to the public at the Peabody Essex Museum in Salem, MA, where it was relocated in 2003. The museum's Chinese art curator, Berliner worked with the 34th and 35th generations of Huang family members to arrange the transfer. Here they share their remembrances, along with genealogical tracing that includes stories of earlier generations. Furniture, artifacts, letters, and other objects from the home are illustrated on nearly every page of the book. Berliner puts everything into context in the first chapter, explaining that the mountainous locale was the reason many men from the village worked as merchants in distant cities. The second chapter focuses on the binding aspect of tradition that drew them back to build large homes for their families, while the third and final chapter discusses the home's architectural components. Because Yin Yu Tang is discussed within a much broader framework, this book is recommended not just for architecture collections but also for the Chinese history and culture sections of both public and academic libraries.-Anne Marie Lane, Univ. of Wyoming, Laramie Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
From the Publisher
"The complex tale of Yin Yu Tang's salvation, careful dismantling, painstaking reconstruction and authentic refurnishing at the New England institution is alluded to in a brief epilogue. But it is the profoundly moving saga of the Huang family, generations of whom lived and died in Yin Yu Tang, that raises this above a routine preservation success story. Their touching and uplifting stories, told in the first person through letters, diaries and interviews, confirm how the psychic relationship between house and home is by far the most elemental function of architecture." —The New York Times

"If only walls could talk? Well, Yin Yu Tang's did, and what a story they have to tell." —Asian Review of Books

"This book is recommended…for the Chinese history and culture sections of both public and academic libraries." —Library Journal

"When architecture is viewed as an art, it marks the beginning of civilization Echoed with traditional music, it is a history book written with wood and stone." 𔉐Luo Zhewen, architectural historian and author of Ancient Pagodas in China and China's Imperial Tombs and Mausoleums

""Oh, if a house could talk…" Thanks to the Peabody Essex Museum and this book, Yin Yu Tang is speaking volumes about its fascinating two hundred-year history. As a correspondent for CBS News Sunday Morning, I've gotten to do some amazing stories, but it isn't often one completely captivates me the way this one did. The story of Yin Yu Tang, the house that left home, is magical." —Martha Teichner, CBS News

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780804834872
Publisher:
Tuttle Publishing
Publication date:
05/15/2003
Edition description:
Hardcover with Jacket
Pages:
192
Product dimensions:
9.00(w) x 10.00(h) x 0.90(d)

Meet the Author

Nancy Berliner is currently the Wu Tung Curator of Chinese Art at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. She previously held the position of curator of Chinese art at the Peabody Essex Museum in Salem, Massachusetts, where she spearheaded and curated the Yin Yu Tang house project. She also serves as a consultant to the World Monuments Fund on the Forbidden City's Qianlong Garden conservation project. She has lectured throughout the world including at Harvard University, Dartmouth College, University of California at Berkeley, Asia Society, La Sorbonne in Paris, Tel Aviv University, Palace Museum and World Art Museum in Beijing. She has written for the New York Times, Asian Wall Street Journal, Boston Globe, Asian Art, and Orientations magazines.

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Yin Yu Tang: The Architecture and Daily Life of a Chinese House 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Silently pads in, yawns and falls asleep in her new nest.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Pads in
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Hello auntie
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Just any posts