imperial masterpieces from taipei national palace museum

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Taiwan’s Jadeite Cabbage Japan Tour in Jeopardy. comments from reader The shame of the Chinese Nation that it is held in Taiwan, where the populace overwhelming do not want to be Chinese. Yet they hold one of China’s most precious national treasure….and China, for whatever lame reason, allows this situation to feste


  • Photo: SCMP Pictures
  • Cover Page : Photo: SCMP Pictures Taiwan threatens to cancel crown jewels exhibit in Japan over publicity mistake PUBLISHED : Friday, 20 June, 2014, 8:32pm UPDATED : Friday, 20 June, 2014, 11:10pm Lawrence Chung in Taipei The National Palace Museum in Taipei. Photo: EPA A furious Taiwan yesterday threatened to cancel a long-planned exhibition of the islands treasures in Japan after Tokyo organisers dropped the word national from the National Palace Museums name in publicity materials. Taipei interpreted the move as a refusal to recognise Taiwans claimed sovereignty and an adherence to Beijings one China policy, which declares Taiwan as Chinese territory, subject to eventual reunification. President Ma Ying-jeou has been greatly concerned over the case and demanded that if the Japanese side fails to react positively, all such exhibition activities in Japan must be scrapped, Ma said in a statement. First lady Christine Chow Mei-ching would also call off her plan to attend the opening ceremony of the exhibition, the statement said. Chow was originally scheduled to lead a delegation to Japan on Sunday for the opening ceremony of the exhibition next Monday. The show will have 231 valuable art objects on display from June to November at the Tokyo National Museum and the Kyushu National Museum. It would mark the first time Taiwans National Palace Museum has ever loaned its valuable collection, including its so-called crown jewels, the Jadeite Cabbage with Insects and the Meat- Shaped Stone, for exhibitions elsewhere in Asia.
  • The events chief organiser, the Tokyo National Museum, had agreed to use the full title of the Taipei museum in the publicity but neglected to add the word national in its promotion materials. Publicity materials failed to include the Taipei museum's full name. Photo: SCMP Pictures Ma stressed that the National Palace Museum was its official name and that the government would not accept any other names that hurt Taiwans dignity. Taiwans foreign ministry said it set a deadline of 11pm tomorrow for the correction to be made. Taiwan and the mainland were bitter rivals since the end of a civil war in 1949. There relations have improved only after Ma became president in 2008 and adopted a policy to engage Beijing. The Nationalists were reported to have shipped more than 650,000 precious artefacts, originally housed by the National Palace Museum in Beijing, to Taiwan shortly before they were defeated by the Communists.
  • In 1965, the Nationalist government had the palace museum relocated to Taipei, and it was only until after 2008 that the two palace museums began exchanges and cooperation. But up to now, the Taiwan museum has declined to loan its treasures for exhibitions on the mainland on the grounds that Beijing has not enacted any law guaranteeing their safe return. Taiwans National Palace Museum since the 1990s has loaned its artefacts to the United States, France, Germany and Austria, all of which used the word national in its name. PUBLISHED : Friday, 20 June, 2014, 8:32pm UPDATED : Friday, 20 June, 2014, 11:10pm Lawrence Chung in Taipei Find out More about in the Next Article : Odyssey of China's Imperial Art Treasures Concerning a civilization, five thousand years of continuous existence speak for themselves. Splendors of ImperialChina, and the catalogue volumes issued to commemorate it, should generate a true sense of admiration and respect for a culture and civilization little known in the West, but from which there is a great deal to be learned. China is becoming the World First Economy in very near future
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  • to the history of Chinas culture, to the dif- ferent philosophical currents that emerged, and to technological achieve- ments, inventions, and discoveries among them, for example, the glorious invention of paper. In these five thousand years, there were conflicts between Confucianism, Legalism, Taoism, and Buddhism, and great peri- ods of cultural renaissance, such as that of the Twelfth- century A.D. Confucian Renaissance under the Sung Dynasty. This enor- mous history, which would require many years of study to begin to compre- hend, could be at least appreciated though the exhibit Splendors of Imperial China: Treasures from the National Palace Museum, Taipei, which completed a year-long U.S. tour in April at the Nation- al Gallery of Art in Wash- ington, D.C., after appear- ing in New York, Chicago, and San Francisco. Two-thirds of the nearly 450 rare objects in the exhibition, many clas- sified as national treasures, have never before been shown in the U.S. On only three previous occasions have masterpieces from the National Palace Muse- um travelled to the West: to London in 1935-1936, to the United States in 1961-1962, and again in 1991-1992, where they were included in the National Gallerys famous Circa 1492 exhibition commemorating the dis- Chinese culture has been in continu- ous, uninterrupted existence for more than five thousand years, making it unique: the oldest civilization in the world. In these five thousand years, the rise and fall of dynasties was closely linked 88 Treasures from China Relate Five-Thousand Year History EXHIBITS Fan Kuan (c.980-1050), Travelling Amid Streams and Mountains. Wang Meng, Forest Chamber Grotto at Ch-ch (after 1365). NationalPalaceMuseum,Taipei,Taiwan,RepublicofChina NationalPalaceMuseum,Taipei,Taiwan,RepublicofChina covery of the Americas. Organized chronologically, the objects in the show presented the great artistic traditions of Chinese civilization over millennia, from the Neolithic period through the Eighteenth century A.D. Beginning with a room dedicated to the Neolithic and Bronze Ages, the exhibi- tion progressed into the later dynasties, the Tang (A.D. 618-907), Sung (960- 1279), Yan (1272-1368), Ming (1368- 1644), and Ching (1644-1911). This orga- nization, which allowed the viewer to compare the advances (or, in some cases, declines) not only of the levels of techno- logical achievement (e.g., in the produc- tion of porcelain and the development of the glazes, or in the pictorial techniques used to represent space), but also of world outlook, depending upon which philo- sophical current was favored by the rul- ing imperial strata. Such a change leaps out, for example, when comparing paint- ings from the Imperial Painting Acade- my created under the Sung Dynasty, with ones produced during the subse- quent Yan, after the Mongols invaded and occupied China, and the Confucian Renaissance was destroyed by the expan- sion of Taoist influence. Click here for Full Issue of Fidelio Volume 6, Number 2, Summer 1997 1997 Schiller Institute, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part without permission strictly prohibited.
  • 89 Government Promotion of the Arts During the Sung Dynasty, painting was organized under the auspices of a cen- tralized Imperial Painting Academy, and painters were recruited by the new government from all parts of the Empire to serve the needs of the imperi- al court. Over time, the traditions repre- sented by this group of artists became what is known today as the Sung acade- mic manner, the culmination of cen- turies of achievement in mastering a naturalistic, closely descriptive and con- vincing portrayal of the physical world, in the words of Maxwell K. Hearn, author of the catalogue The Splendors of Imperial China. Under the Emperor Hui-tsung (1101-1125), himself an accomplished painter and calligrapher, the arts were developed to the point where they became the example for all succeeding academies. Aside from landscape paint- ing, Hui-tsungs academicians special- ized in religious figures, historical nar- ratives, genre painting, flowers, birds, and animals, all keenly observed and meticulously rendered. Many of the paintings from this peri- od remind a Western viewer of draw- ings and watercolors on the same sub- jects by later, great Western masters, such as Albrecht Drer and Leonardo da Vinci. One of the most beautiful examples is the hanging scroll Winter Play [SEE front cover, this issue], attrib- uted to Su Han-chen (c.1130-60s), a preeminent painter of children at the Southern Sung court. This painting is part of a set of hanging scrolls that prob- ably showed children in each of the four seasons. The portrayal of a young girl and her slightly younger playmate, is a strong indication that children of both sexes were prized in the imperial world. The children are depicted at play, bat- tling a pretend-dragon kitten, using, as their weapon, a banner adorned with a peacock feather. The Imperial Painting Academy was closed during the reign of the first Yan emperor, Khubilai Khan (1215-1294), the grandson of Genghis Khan. Pictorial representation became introspective, and realistic representation as a product of the observation of nature practically disappeared. The sense of aerial (atmos- pheric) perspective achieved by the Sung painters, where the white spaces are not empty, but full of space, was lost. Compare, for example, such examples of Sung artistry as Travelling Amid Streams and Mountains of Fan Kuan (c.980-1050), with the Yan artist Wang Mengs (c.1308-1385) Forest Chamber Grotto at Ch-ch, where the painter abandons all suggestion of spatial reces- sion, and confronts the viewer with a densely textured wall of rock and water . . . creating a vision of an enclosed and sequestered environment that lies out- side of the real world. East and West U