The most curious thing about this picture is not the tall plant with the big leaves in the middle, or the two pairs of men working in the field either side of the plant, not even the large white long-fingered shape in the lower right-hand corner of the image. Not even the title of the book, visible in the banner in the sky, Rabarbarologia Curiosa, is strange. The strangest thing about the image is, in fact, the architecture of the city in the right-hand background of the image:
A close look at the city reveals white-washed walls with small openings surrounding a city with several tall buildings, a round tower on the far left of the city walls, an entrance gate with what looks like battlements, (more…)
|‘Dough kneading’: mural from Zhao Dejun tomb, near Beijing (China, 10th century)|
Lecture: The disputed issue of the origin of noodles: a new comparative approach
Francoise Sabban / Friday April 22, 2016
In this ‘Shared Taste’ lecture, Professor Françoise Sabban (École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales, Paris) will try to dig deeper into an issue that has puzzled food historians for some time: who invented the noodle first? Were the Italians first with their invention of pasta, or was it the Chinese, with their invention of noodles?
Evidence suggests that making noodles from wheat occurred earlier in Northern China than in the Mediterranean basin. But why is that the case, when wheat was the most significant cereal of the Mediterranean world? (more…)
At the Asia in Amsterdam symposium which was held at the start of the exhibition “Asia in Amsterdam” – which has moved from Amsterdam and will be on view in the Peabody Essex Museum in Salem, MA (USA) from February 27, 2016- , the Shared Taste project delivered a paper presented by prof. Anne Gerritsen on early culinary exchange, entitled “Candied ginger and China root: Asian ingredients in the 17th century Dutch kitchen“.
To determine whether the arrival of Asian spices and other ‘exotic’ ingredients and condiments on VOC ships in the early 17th century indeed influenced foodways in the Netherlands, as is the general assumption, we decided to look for these (supposedly) unfamiliar ingredients in 16th and 17th century Dutch cookbooks, and track the changes over time.
Syposium: Chinese export paintings: studies and interpretations
Date: Tuesday, November 29, 2016, 13:00-17:30 hours
Venue: Museum Volkenkunde, Steenstraat 1, Leiden
You are most welcome to attend after registration: register @ sharedtaste.nl
Speakers from the museum world, art dealers, (art) historians, sinologists, anthropologists and other academics will come together in this interdisciplinary symposium, where the subject of Chinese export paintings will be viewed from varied angles and perspectives.
The symposium is is organized by Anne Gerritsen, Rosalien van der Poel and the Shared Taste project of Leiden University, and hosted by Museum Volkenkunde with generous support from the Hulsewé-Wazniewski Foundation at Leiden University.
‘With these two sticks, the Japanese are able to fill their mouths with marvelous swiftness and agility. They can pick up any piece of food, no matter how tiny it is, without ever soiling their hands’.
This is an observation made by Francesco Carletti, a Florentine merchant, who set out from Seville in the late sixteenth century, on what would become an eight-year journey across the world that included Japan. He was not the first European (more…)
Objects kept inside a museum, displayed in a beautiful or artful way, can only be looked at from a distance : the whole point is to keep precious and valuable objects safe from harm. Yet when one actually touches material culture, there is a spark of communication which leads towards to a whole new way of seeing things.
Teawares and the material culture of early exchange between China and Korea
These green-glazed bowls were made in Korea in the late twelfth century. China’s prowess in making fine ceramics is perhaps better known than Korea’s tradition, but the quality of these beautiful bowls serves to illustrate the unfairness of that difference in global fame. But were the two traditions entirely unrelated, or is there a connection between them? Is there, perhaps, even a ‘shared taste’ between the two? Let’s trace their story from their arrival in Europe.
In 1912 Francis Bernard Aubrey Le Blond (1869–1951) travelled by boat to China, Korea and Japan, and returned to Europe by Trans-Siberian Railway via Russia . His pioneer wife, the mountaineer and photographer Elizabeth Alice Frances Le Blond (1860–1934), accompanied him . (more…)
|Soybean cake in the port of Dairen (Dalian) awaiting for shipment, 1908.
Library of Congress, Prints and Photographs Division, Washington DC
High diplomacy and a humble bean: The global entanglement of the Manchurian soybean, 1900s–1930s
Ines Prodöhl / Friday May 1, 2015
In this lecture, Ines Prodöhl (German Historical Institute, Washington DC) will trace how imperialism and globalization converged in the Manchurian soybean between approx. 1900 and 1930.
During this period, a steadily increasing demand for soybeans in Japan and Europe shaped the region agriculturally and economically.
At the same time, the struggle between Russia and Japan for imperial control over Northeast China created a highly complex situation for the growers, processors, traders, and purchasers of soybeans and their products.
The lecture disentangles these mainly transnational relationships and discusses the local impact of a process known nowadays as globalization.
Venue: SieboldHuis (Rapenburg 19, Leiden)
Date: Friday May 1, 2015
Time: 14:30-15:30 hours, followed by discussion, then reception and drinks.
You are most welcome to attend! Lecture is free, please register through alice [at] sharedtaste.nl