« A Map of the US...Made of Slime Mold | Main | The Beauty of Maps »

Global Positioning c. 1600: A Rare World Map

The Global Positioning c. 1600: A Rare World Map exhibit is up at the Minneapolis Institute of Arts!

From the exhibit website:

Saturday, May 15, 2010--Sunday, August 29, 2010
Cargill Gallery 103
Free Exhibition

Matteo Ricci's monumental world map of 1602 has been as elusive as it is legendary, with only six complete copies of the woodblock print known to exist. Popularly called "The Impossible Black Tulip," Kunyu wanguo quantu, or Map of the Ten Thousand Countries of the World, is coming to the Minneapolis Institute of Arts. This map, which was created by a visiting Italian-born Jesuit priest, Matteo Ricci, is the oldest surviving Chinese map to show the Americas.

A select group of Ming dynasty objects, Chinese export porcelain, western maps, and Counter-Reformation devotional images will be on view with the map. Rare Chinese woodblock prints from an illustrated Bible published by Ricci's Jesuit colleague, Giulio Aleni, will also be displayed, evoking the cultural and religious exchange between China and Europe during this period.


The Ricci Map is owned by the James Ford Bell Trust, and has been loaned to the MIA.