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Phoenix Crown

Riders from the North: The Qidan – their Culture, Lifestyles, and Beliefs

Mar 22, 6:00 PM–7:00 PM

John L. Santikos Auditorium

Ticket Price: Free with Admission

Ticket Price Members: Free


This lecture will explore the relationship between the artistic legacy of the Qidan, founders of, China’s first major foreign dynasty, and their multi-cultural background. Dr. So will discuss how the Qidans’ hunting and herding livelihood among pine-covered hills in the north and semi-deserts in the west are revealed by the artifacts they made for use in life and burial in death. Illustrations will be drawn from the collection of the San Antonio Museum of Art and recent archaeological discoveries in China. 


Jenny F. So received her B.A. from Swarthmore College, and M.A. and Ph.D. in Art History from Harvard University before joining the Smithsonian Institution’s museums of Asian Art as Senior Curator in charge of their ancient Chinese art collections. In 2000, she left the Smithsonian Institution to take up the position of Professor of Fine Arts at the Chinese University of Hong Kong.  Dr. So has published widely in Chinese bronzes and jades from the Neolithic to the Qing Dynasty, with special interests in the artistic and cultural interactions between China and its neighbors, collecting, and connoisseurship.  

This program will be held in-person and will be streamed via zoom at 6 p.m. 

Twin Phoenix Crown. Chinese. 907-1125. Liao. Gilt copper. Purchased with funds provided by the Bessie Timon Endowment Fund.

Lectures and Artist Conversations are made possible by generous support from the Louis A. and Frances B. Wagner lecture fund.  

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