Tag Archives: china

Ritual Vessel [Object of the Day #68]

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The vessel, pictured above, is a four sided fanghu (fāng hú) or square jar. This vessel is composed of copper alloy, bronze, malachite and pigment. The four sides are inlaid with green malachite in a delicate pattern. The pattern is still visible despite much of the malachite being lost. On either side of the vessel are […]

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Statuette from Liao Dynasty [Object of the Day #63]

Statuette from the Liao Dynasty

This gilt bronze statuette is a representation of the compassionate and venerated Guanyin, a popular figure in eastern Buddhism. The figure’s graceful stance and relaxed expression give the statue a sense of peace. In her hands, she holds a lotus bud while over her forehead, at the base of the high crown headdress, is a tiny […]

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Zhuang Embroidered Jacket [Object of the Day #20]

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One of the newest acquisitions in the Asian Section is a collection of ethnographic textiles from the Philadelphia Civic Center Museum formerly known as the Commercial Museum. Originally exhibited at the 1900 Exposition Universelle in Paris, the approximately 400 pieces entered the museum and expanded the range of the textile collection to include South China, Indochina, […]

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Seated Luohan from China [Object of the Day #17]

Seated Luohan

The Penn Museum’s luohan is one of the most famous and important pieces in the museum’s collection. The fact that it is slightly larger than life size makes it a marvel of technology. Firing something so big  is extremely hard to do without destroying the piece in the process.  The modeled  facial features also imply […]

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Mandarin Square [Object of the Day #9]

Mandarin Square

This satin Mandarin Square from the Qing Dynasty, China (19th century) depicts a Qilin, a mythical horse-like animal reserved for the weaves of first rank military officers. The body of Qilin has a couched filling of twisted blue thread to create a scale effect. Symbols include peaches, peonies, and fungus with bamboo. Penn Museum Object […]

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Rhinoceros Libation Cups

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The Chinese antiques market continues to grow as evidenced by the recent Antiques Roadshow episode that featured a set of rhinoceros libation cups valued at over a million dollars.   This morning as I flipped through the channels I came across the Today show and saw a plug for a segment with the owner of […]

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The Silk Road Smile Contest

Meet the “Yingpan Man”. He is on display as part of our Secrets of the Silk Road exhibition which runs through March 15th with all mummies and artifacts. His mysterious smile has been compared to that of the Mona Lisa… What am I thinking? Submit your caption as a comment on Facebook and we’ll pick […]

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Inside Info: The Silk Road Exhibition

Hi! Social Media Josh here. Just got done my lunch break and decided to hop upstairs and pay a visit to the Secrets of the Silk Road Exhibition. The staff here really did an amazing job. The atmosphere, artifacts, music and mummies provide an experience that can’t be matched. The interactive portions all provide hands-on […]

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Penn Museum’s Own Piece of the Silk Road

During the height of the Silk Road and the bright beginnings of the Tang dynasty, China was ruled by one Emperor Tang Taizong. Taizong’s rule is remembered for its economic prosperity, cultural richness and cosmopolitanism, as well as for its unprecedented expansion of Chinese borders into the Western Xinjiang Regions. At the end of his life, he […]

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China’s Secret Mummies [VIDEO]

Victor Mair, Professor of Chinese Language and Literature at Penn, lends his expertise to this short documentary from National Geographic. Make sure to visit the Secrets of the Silk Road exhibit at the Penn Museum opening February 5th.

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