Shanxi Bronze Museum
Address: 13 Guangjing Road, Wanbolin District, Taiyuan, Shanxi Province
Website: www.shanximuseum.com/bronze.html (Cn)
Hours: 9:00-17:00 (entry until 16:00)
Closed on Mondays (except for national holidays), Lunar New Year’s Eves, and Lunar New Year’s Day
General admission: Free (passport or identification of Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan residents required for entry)
Tel: (+86-351) 5225000
The first bronze-themed museum at provincial level in China, the Shanxi Bronze Museum is located in Taiyuan, the capital city of north China's Shanxi Province, and opened to the public in July 2019. Covering an area of 11,000 square meters, it is installed in an architectural complex within the five marvelous red inverted-cone shaped buildings of the Taiyuan Museum, which constitute a landmark of the city.
Historically, Shanxi was a land rich in bronze usage and it has nurtured a splendid bronze civilization. The Shanxi Bronze Museum has collected and houses more than 2,000 bronze cultural relics, including art works, unearthed in the province. The permanent exhibition, divided into three sections, reviews the Bronze civilization of Shanxi. The three sections are the Trace of Chinese Civilization, Rites and Music of the Spring and Autumn Period (770-476 BC) and Bronze-Making Technology. The first displays the relics that were made in the early Bronze Age, reflecting the great skills of bronze manufacturing in this area in the Xia (c.21st century-16th century BC), Shang (c.16th century-11th century BC) and Zhou (c.11th century-256 BC) dynasties and the brilliant local Jin (a state in the Zhou Dynasty in ancient China) Culture that has had a long lasting influence on Chinese civilization. The second section, as its name suggests, shows bronzes of the Spring and Autumn Period that were used on various occasions, including in daily routines, sacrifices, banquets, political conferences, wars, diplomacy, weddings and funerals. Its rich collection witnesses the rise and fall of a social and culture system identified by bronzes. As the conclusive section, the third illustrates the development of the technologies of bronze smelting, casting and decorating in the Shanxi area in ancient times. Moulds in different shapes and tools and demonstrations of manufacturing methods are particularly displayed. The museum uses multimedia to show its collection and ensure visitors have a fun and immersive experience.
Recommended objects displayed in the permanent exhibition include a Wine Vessel of Yi (Yi zun); a Drinking Vessel in Shape of a Beast (Shouxing gong); a Plate of Duke Wen of Jin (Jingong pan); a Crossbow Inlayed with Silver Patterns (Cuoyin juanwen nuji); and a Lamp in the Shape of a Wild Goose with a Fish in Mouth (Yanyu tongdeng);
In the third section, the lost-wax casting technology (shila fa) is demonstrated using models. It illustrates the complicated casting method adopted and perfected by Chinese people in ancient times.
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