China’s First Emperor’s Warriors are going home! Last two weeks to visit them at Asian Art Museum in San Francisco, Part I

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I mentioned several times on my blogs about Asian Art Museum (AAM) in San Francisco.  I have been a Chartered member for many years, but due to workload, I did not visit the AAM as often as I like to.  The current Terracotta Warriors Exhibition has started in February but I did not have the chance to visit till today.  As I had visited Xian some years ago, and seen the life-size Warriors, I thought it was no big deal to see them again at AAM.  I was wrong.  Although I did see a big group of Warriors in Xian, we were not allowed to go near to them.  We could only see them from a higher level and take pictures from there.  I still remember seeing some pictures of President Clinton and his family being allowed to go down to take photos with the Warriors.  I admired him for that opportunity which I would never have!

Yet today, we all had the chance to take our own pictures with the Warriors which were  just a foot away.  I did not choose to do so, but I took a bunch of pictures of the Warriors.  The museum allows visitors to take pictures as long as there is no flash.  The result is so good that I cannot help posting them immediately tonight.  I would say that the curator did a fantastic job in the lighting arrangement.  I am posting them on a slide-show and a gallery.  Please see for yourself.  The iPhone pictures are not bad even in a dark environment.  I think the effect is better if you see them via the gallery.  Please click on any photo below, and the gallery will open up.  Then you can see them in full size.  If you want to download them to your computer to see them, please go ahead and do so.  The effect to see them in full screen on your computer is the best.

I also met my friend Margaret who is a docent at AAM.  I think she is one of the finest docents at AAM.  I have learned a lot from her in Asian Art as well as her travel experience.  Her guided tour was excellent.  The only problem was the big crowd. I chose the wrong day (it is Mother’s Day).  I think I would take some of my colleagues during the weekdays.  Some of them did not have the chance to see the Warriors in Xian.

Although I  intend to write something about the Terracotta Warriors and the other objects excavated from the tomb, I won’t have time tonight.  Here’s the information on the Asian Art Museum website:

About the Exhibition

“The First Emperor, Qin Shihuang (259-210 BCE) conquered much in this life, but his driving purpose was even greater: He sought to conquer death. In order to achieve immortality, he built himself a tomb—a vast underground city guarded by a life-size terracotta army including warriors, infantrymen, horses, chariots and all their attendant armor and weaponry.

First unearthed in 1974, the underground burial complex of the First Emperor is a revelation for the ages, an astonishing discovery on par with Egypt’s mummies and elaborate tombs. Contemporary observers continue to be enthralled by his legacy, and it is through this ongoing interest that the First Emperor did indeed achieve immortality. This exhibition includes ten figures—a representative sample of the actual army, which is estimated to include more than 7,000 life-sized figures and over 10,000 weapons.”

I hope this post will stimulate the interests of some of you to visit the Exhibition before it ends on May 27, 2013.


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