Art Gallery NSW Sydney
8 April- 10 July 2016
Discover the Golden Age of China with treasures of gold, silver and glass, as well as ceramics, sculptures and mural paintings from the Tang Empire.
While Europe was still in the Dark Ages, the Tang Empire (618-907) was the most powerful realm in the world. At the heart of Tang was its ancient capital, Chang’an (present day Xi’an). Located at the start of the famous Silk Road trade route, this cosmopolitan metropolis was renowned for its great wealth, sophistication and cultural diversity.
Tang: treasures from the Silk Road capital explores life in Chang’an during the Tang Empire. Each artefact carries a story from this extraordinary time; from the freedom and power of women to innovations in fashion and music, from the elevation of tea culture to religious tolerance and the rise and fall of Buddhism.
The exhibition also features Pure Land: inside the Mogao Grottoes at Dunhuang, an augmented-reality installation that transports you to an ancient Buddhist grotto within the UNESCO World Heritage listed ‘Caves of the Thousand Buddhas’. Stand in the shoes of archaeologists and explore a life-sized reconstruction of cave 220. Discover intricate murals and statues that tell the story of the Medicine Buddha and the 12 great vows taken upon enlightenment. Brought to life through iPads using advanced 3D modelling techniques, Pure Land lets you travel to one of the world’s most remarkable – and now inaccessible – heritage sites along the Silk Road.