Chine en révolution
20 February
31 March

China in Revolution

Sketches from the Maoist Epoch
Faithful to its policy of supporting cultural heritage and making it available to the broadest possible audience, AXA France has enriched the collections of the Cernuschi Museum with an exceptional donation of sketches from the Maoist period (1949 – 1976), a crucial epoch in the history of China, which until now has been notably absent from French collections.

These preparatory drawings for paintings—some of which have become icons—enable exploring the conditions under which artistic productions in the Maoist period were made and getting an idea of the spirit of an epoch during which aesthetics were at the service of politics. In 1942, Mao Zedong (1893-1976) defined artistic practice as contingent on revolutionary goals; this became the doctrine of the Chinese Communist Party with respect to cultural matters and was later imposed when the People’s Republic of China was founded in 1949.


Presented for the first time to the public in the context of the exhibition entitled China in Revolution: Sketches from the Maoist Epoch, these works reveal the themes and styles of the Maoist period, as well as the way in which artists attempted to make political slogans into images.  Effectively enough, artistic debate promoted the creation of works that were paradoxically complex and inventive, in spite of a context of constraint.


The exhibition presents a set of sketches for major works made by the artists Cai Liang, Lin Gang, Pang Tao, Quan Shanshi, Song Ren, Su Gaoli, Tang Xiaohe, Wang Shenglie, Xiao Feng and Yin Rongsheng.


Knowledge of visual and iconographic codes and the creative process behind these works produced from 1950 to 1970 is essential in understanding the history of modern and contemporary Chinese art. The Maoist period introduced one of the major aesthetic ruptures of the twentieth century in China, as demonstrated by the sketches presented by the Cernuschi Museum.


Thanks to the patronage of AXA France



Entrée libre

Public et Horaire

  • Enfant / Adolescent
  • Famille
  • Adulte


photo du musée
Musée Cernuschi, musée des Arts de l’Asie de la Ville de Paris

7 avenue Vélasquez
75008 Paris


  • Enfant / Adolescent
  • Famille
  • Adulte


Logo AXA France
AXA France