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Opening on February 10, 2019, "Buried Treasures of the Silk Road" highlights the extraordinary collection of Chinese tomb art in the Fred and Jane Brooks Collection of the Bruce Museum. The exhibition will also feature additional objects and antiquities from the Orient from the Museum’s permanent collection to tell the story of the Silk Road.
The Silk Road, a network of caravan routes, stretched thousands of miles across China, Central Asia, and Eastern Europe. Merchants transported tons of exotic luxury goods: silk, gold, lapis lazuli, furs and ivory on the backs of camels and horses. The trade centers were bustling cosmopolitan cities where markets supported a multi-cultural exchange of ideas, inventions, and commodities.
During the period of peace and prosperity of the Han Dynasty (206 BCE – 220CE), emissaries ventured from China into Eurasia to establish trading partners. Laden with polychrome, patterned silk- a luxury never seen outside of China, the merchants established and then maintained control over the Silk Road for four hundred years. Han inventions, such as paper, lead to portable, reliable maps and indelible ink trade contracts.
China blossomed again under the prosperous Tang Dynasty (618CE – 907CE) as Chinese merchants expanded control over the taxes and tolls on the network of Silk Road commerce.
Mortuary rites and customs were important elements of Chinese culture during both the Han and Tang dynasties. Wealthy citizens expanded on the tradition of furnishing their massive burial chambers with numerous and elaborate art objects. Grave goods, called mingqi or “spirit goods,” indicated the status of the person on earth and were interred for use in the afterlife. The materials and stylistic elements of grave goods reflected China’s extensive control of the Silk Road trade.
This exhibition will be on view through June 2, 2019. For more information, visit brucemuseum.org or call 203-869-0376.
Contact Name: Scott Smith
Contact Email: email@example.com
Contact Phone: 203-869-0376
Admission: Adults $10.00; Students (5-22 w/ valid ID) $8.00; Seniors (65 & up) $8.00. Museum members and children under 5 Free. Free individual admission on Tuesdays.
The Bruce Museum is accessible to individuals with disabilities.
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