Here Lives Our Culture

July 2023 - March 2024

Here Lives Our Culture explores cultural materials drawn from more than 20,000 items in the University of Melbourne’s Rare East Asian Collection. To reflect the experience of a traditional Chinese library, the exhibition is organised around the four-category system used in ancient China: Classics, History, Masters, and Literature. China has an extensive history of collecting and classifying books, and libraries have long sat at the heart of its cultural knowledge production. Inspired by the Analects of Confucius and encompassing materials from the seventeenth to the twentieth century, Here Lives Our Culture invites you to learn, share and connect through our collections at the Baillieu Library.


Black paper with figures in white in landscape on right side and columns of vertical Chinese characters on left.

Guide to the Exhibition

Explore exhibition themes and extended label text, read curator Xiaoju Liu’s exhibition guide and learn more about the historical, literary and cultural links shared by the rare objects in the exhibition – both Chinese and Japanese – from the University of Melbourne’s Rare East Asian Collection.


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Research Essays

Explore original contributions by scholars of Chinese and Asian Studies, postgraduate students and Special Collections curators, expanding on the themes in Here Lives Our Culture.


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Landscape with Japanese figures in kimonos, in snowy landscape with lake.
Wooden and paper fan with black map printed on cream paper.

Public Programs

Engage with the exhibition through our series of fun and interactive programs across the campus celebrating East Asian art and culture.


What's On

Image Gallery

Explore the exhibition online through our gallery of installation photographs.

Start exploring

Photograph of gallery space with framed works, painted walls lit by spotlights