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Ancient Sichuan:
Treasures from a Lost Civilization
Edited by Robert Bagley

Honorable Mention for the George Wittenborn Memorial Book Award

Hardcover | 2001 | This edition is out of print | ISBN: 9780691088518

Reviews

This extraordinary catalogue accompanies a major traveling exhibition of 128 works of bronze, jade, and clay dating from the thirteenth century B.C. to the second century A.D. The majority of these stunningly sophisticated works of art--among the most unusual and spectacular produced anywhere in the ancient world--all come from a startling archaeological discovery made just fourteen years ago at the previously unknown site of Sanxingdui in Sichuan province. The discovery of this Bronze Age civilization fundamentally changes our understanding of Chinese history.

Representing fifteen hundred years of cultural production, these striking objects are extraordinarily varied, ranging from a monumental standing figure and an almost life-size bronze horse to ritual vessels, masks, and bronze heads of fantastic-looking supernatural beings, finely honed jade knives and ritual blades, and marvelous clay statuettes. Most have never before been seen in the United States. The exhibition and catalogue represent a unique international effort to continue the study of ancient Sichuan.

Under the leadership of Robert Bagley, an international team of scholars contributes eight essays on the archaeological discoveries at Sanxingdui, the art historical importance of these objects, and the new history of ancient China they tell. Contributors are Michèle Pirazzoli-t'Serstevens, Jessica Rawson, Lothar von Falkenhausen, Alain Thote, Jenny F. So, Michael Nylan, and the Seattle Art Museum's Curator of Chinese Art, Jay Xu. In addition to the essays, there are individual entries for each object, nearly all of which have been newly photographed for this publication.

Ancient Sichuan contributes to a revolutionary change in perceptions of ancient Chinese civilization, providing an unprecedented opportunity to explore the art, material culture, and spiritual life of ancient China.

EXHIBITION SCHEDULE:

Seattle Art Museum, Seattle
May-August 2001

Kimbell Museum of Art, Fort Worth
September 2001-January 2002

Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York
March-June 2002

Royal Ontario Museum, Toronto
August-November 2002

Review:

"This book's fine design and gorgeous photography will interest readers."--Library Journal

"This well-made . . . book . . . documents the principal excavations and offers full-color photographs of some of the most spectacular finds. . . . Students and collectors of Asian art will enjoy browsing through this richly illustrated catalog."--Gregory McNamee, Bloomsbury Review

Beautifully and profusely illustrated in color with many black-and-white photographs and diagrams, this volume documents a need for the reassessment of China's ancient art history. . . . A splendid book."--Choice

Copublished with the Seattle Art Museum

File created: 9/23/2014

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