ALTFIELD has a fine selection of European topographical prints relating to Asia, as well as natural history prints generally associated with the Asia/Pacific region. These increasingly rare 17th, 18th and 19th Century engravings depict many of the famous locations in China and were based on the paintings by artists who accompanied explorers on early journeys by westerners to China.

1655 Jan Nieuhoff went with the first Dutch Embassy to China and recorded a series of wonderfully imaginative depictions of scenes and places he encountered. His images are available in the copper-plate engravings first published in 1655. We normally have in stock a number of his best engravings from this trip.

William Alexander in 1792 joined the first British Embassy to China and was one of the most talented artists to visit Peking under the Emperor Ch'ien-Lung, the most famous Emperor of the Qing Dynasty. His large and beautifully detailed hand-coloured copper-plates show various scenes along the waterways of China and in Peking. Another artist who actually worked for the Emperor Ch'ien-Lung was Giuseppe Castiglione. He produced exceptional copper-plate engravings based on the conquest of East Turkestan. Other travelling artists included Auguste Borget who produced wonderful lithographs of Southern China and also various French artists who traveled to China aboard the frigates "La Bonite" and "La Favorite". Thomas Allom, a prodigious English artist, also produced many fine steel-plate engravings of China. We try to maintain a stock of the engravings and lithographs produced by all of the best known artists of the China coast.

We also have a number of prints by 19th century artists showing the costumes of China. Hand-coloured copper-plate and stipple-engravings of merchants, maidens, craftsmen and mandarins are among our most popular prints from a series produced by George Mason in 1804.