The Oriental Ceramic Society and The University of Hong Kong Museum Society are delighted to announce a talk by Professor Michael Sullivan, a pioneer in the field of modern Chinese art history, on a lifetime of collecting modern Chinese art. This talk coincides with the first exhibition of the Khoan and Michael Sullivan Collection of Modern Chinese Art in China (from 10th September to 8th October 2012 at the National Art Museum of China (中國美術館)).
Professor Sullivan was in China at a time when the old imperial system had collapsed and modern China, and modern Chinese painting, were emerging. Over a period of seventy-two years, he and his wife Khoan acquired a large collection of art, nearly all gifts of the artists. The collection includes many archival materials such as letters, photographs, books and other writings connected with Professor Sullivan's engagement with modern Chinese art from the 1940s onwards.
Professor Sullivan was born in 1916. He graduated from Cambridge University with a degree in Architecture in 1939. From 1940 until 1946 he worked for the International, and Chinese Red Cross in China in addition to teaching. In 1943 he married Khoan (Wu Baohuan) a biologist from Xiamen. After taking a second degree in Chinese at the School of Oriental and African Studies, he was a Rockefeller Foundation Fellow at Harvard College from where he received his PhD in 1952. Professor Sullivan has taught at the University of Malaya (now of Singapore) (1954-60); the School of Oriental and African Studies, London, and was Professor of Chinese Art at Stanford University, California (1966-84). In 1980 he was appointed a Fellow by Special Election (now Emeritus) of St.Catherine's College, Oxford. His writings include The Arts of China (sixth edition in preparation), Chinese Art in the Twentieth Century, The Meeting of Eastern and Western Art, The Night Entertainments of Han Xizai: A Scroll by Gu Hongzhong, Modern Chinese Art: The Khoan and Michael Sullivan Collection, Art and Artists of Twentieth Century China, among other works.