Past Exhibition

Entombed Treasures: Funerary Art of Han Dynasty China

February 02–April 21, 2013

Special Exhibitions Gallery, 3rd Floor East

Watchtower with Four Figures, Chinese, Han dynasty, ca. 206 BC-AD 220, Glazed earthenware, h. 15 ¼ in. (38.7 cm), Gift of Lenora and Walter F. Brown, 98.15.2.a-d, Photography by Peggy Tenison

Entombed Treasures: Funerary Art of Han Dynasty China showcases the art, daily life, and beliefs of the Han dynasty through examples of tombware from SAMA’s own collection of Chinese ceramics and metalwork. The Han dynasty (206 BC – 220 AD) was a period of great progress and innovation in early China. The visual arts flourished in these four centuries of increased cultural sophistication. Spiritual thought of the period emphasized the continuity between this life and the life experienced after death. Tombs of important officials and landowners were lavishly decorated and stocked with everything the deceased might need in the next world, including favorite belongings, everyday items, and food. Striking ceramic representations of the deceased’s attendants, animals, model homes and granary were among the objects that furnished the tombs. Bronze and earthenware objects in Entombed Treasures, some of which are rarely on view at SAMA, illustrate the development of funerary objects over the course of this formative ancient dynasty.

Exhibition Gallery

(L-R) Figure of a Female Court Attendant, Chinese, Han dynasty, ca. 206 BC-AD 220, Earthenware and pigment, h. 20 in. (50.8 cm); w. 10 in. (25.4 cm); d. 5 ¼ in. (13.3 cm), Gift of Lenora and Walter F. Brown, 98.15.3; Figure of a Female Attendant, Chinese, Western Han dynasty, ca. 206 BC-AD 9, Earthenware with slip and pigments, h. 29 1/8 in. (74 cm); w. 11 ½ in. (29.2 cm); d. 5 ½ in. (14 cm), Gift of Lenora and Walter F. Brown, 98.15.4.a-b; Figure of a Female Court Attendant, Chinese, Han dyna

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