By Thomas J. Loughman
With contributions by Shi Hongshuai, Li Ju, and Mark Dion
This catalogue presents the captivating story of museum founder Robert Sterling Clark’s important but little-known 1908–9 scientific expedition to northwest China. More than a century later, the context and significance of his adventure are being explored, and bringing to light important cultural and archaeological discoveries. Trained as a civil engineer, Clark brought a scientist’s curiosity to the planning of his journey, assembling a talented professional team that included a surveyor, a doctor and meteorologist, an artist, and the British naturalist Arthur de Carle Sowerby, as well as some thirty additional support staff. Departing from the city of Taiyuan in Shanxi province, the Clark expedition traversed the provinces of Shaanxi and Gansu, reaching as far westward as Lanzhou before returning to Taiyuan. In all, the team covered nearly 2000 miles, primarily on horse and mule, and the resulting research launched Sowerby’s career as the leading authority on Chinese fauna. Beautifully illustrated with archival photographs, Sterling Clark in China details the artistic, historical, and cultural legacy of a fascinating journey.
Thomas J. Loughman is assistant deputy director at the Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute.
64 pages, 9 1/4 x 9 inches
20 color and 20 black-and-white illustrations
Published by the Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute and distributed by Yale University Press
ISBN 978-0-300-17968-2 (softcover)