Seminar : The Presence of Qing Officials and Garrisons in mid-19th Century Tibet from a Visual Perspective
In 1857 a British official engaged a Tibetan lama to produce what later ended up as “Wise Collection” in the British Library: the most comprehensive set of visual depictions of mid-19th century Tibet, but also the largest panoramic map of Tibet of its time. The map covers the areas of Lhasa, Central Tibet, Southern and Western Tibet, Ladakh and Zangskar. Topographical characteristics are depicted as well as detailed information on infrastructure. Furthermore, illustrations of monasteries, forts, and garrisons – the “three seats of power” – are shown. We can find more than 30 illustrations of garrisons on the map covering Central and Southern Tibet. But even more is included in this collection of drawings: visual narratives of several Tibetan ceremonies and rituals, detailed illustrations of selected monasteries and temples, such as a very detailed drawing of the so-called Chinese Temple – the Gesar Lhakhang in Lhasa.
This talk will discuss the presence and significance of the Qing officials and garrisons in mid-19th century Tibet from a visual perspective and based on the illustrations in the Wise Collection.
Diana Lange, Humboldt University, Berlin
Discussant: Fabienne Jagou (EFEO, Paris)