Wang Jie|
Exhibition

Exhibition at Shanghai museum features hundreds of ancient sculptures

2024-03-08 to 2024-12-31
Shanghai Museum East Branch
1952 Century Avenue 世纪大道1952号
2024-03-08 to 2024-12-31
Shanghai Museum East Branch
1952 Century Avenue 世纪大道1952号
Exhibition at Shanghai museum features hundreds of ancient sculptures

Bodhisattva in offering, White marble, Tang (618-907)

"Ancient Chinese Sculpture," the second permanent exhibition at the Shanghai Museum East Branch is on display to the public.

The exhibition features 289 three-dimensional cultural relics, mostly selected from the museum's own collection. Including bone and jade carvings, bronzes, wooden figurines, terracotta figurines, tomb carvings, gold and bronze statues, stone and wood statues, clay statues, porcelain sculptures, bamboo, wood, and tooth carvings, one-third are on public display for the first time.

Exhibition at Shanghai museum features hundreds of ancient sculptures

The exhibition features 289 three-dimensional cultural relics, mostly selected from the museum's own collection and one-third are on public display for the first time.

The exhibition is akin to a 3D textbook of ancient Chinese sculptures.

The exhibition includes pre-Qin bronze sculptures, terracotta figurines, and pictorial stone from the Qin and Han dynasties (221 BC-AD 220), pots from the Wei and Jin dynasties (220-589), as well as relief statues from Yungang, Longmen Grottoes.

China has long been known for a variety of sculptures. A large number of sculpted works made of a range of mediums have been unearthed in Neolithic sites. During the Xia, Shang and Zhou dynasties, early sculptures evolved into magnificent decorative crafts and were carved into jade, stone, and bone, or cast in bronze.

According to the organizer, the exhibition tries to reflect the special character of ancient Chinese sculptures to visitors.

Exhibition at Shanghai museum features hundreds of ancient sculptures

Classical Western sculpture can be viewed from multiple angles, while ancient Chinese sculpture is viewed from a specific angle, usually from the front.

Differing from classical Western sculpture which emphasizes the human anatomy and accurate proportion, ancient Chinese sculptures focus on expression of the inner spirit and overall feel, which can be found in pre-Qin bronze sculptures and Han Dynasty portrait bricks and stone.

Classical Western sculpture can be viewed from multiple angles, while ancient Chinese sculpture is viewed from a specific angle, usually from the front.

Western sculpture, together with painting and architecture, has constituted the scope of classical art since the Renaissance. In contrast, ancient Chinese sculpture was dominated by religious idols, tomb carvings, funerary figurines, and craft sculptures. Their realism function was often overlooked.

The combination of the diverse Buddhist culture of the Silk Road and traditional Chinese culture has fused into Chinese Buddhist sculpture. The extraterritorial elements on these sculptures on display reveal evidence of the mutual exchange of civilizations along the Silk Road.

Exhibit info

Date: 9am-7pm

Venue: Shanghai Museum East Branch

Address: 1952 Century Avenue 世纪大道1952号

Admission: Free

Please make reservations on the museum's WeChat program (only available in Chinese).

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