Suzhou Imperial Bricks Museum
Address: 95 Yangchenghu West Road, Xiangcheng district, Suzhou city, Jiangsu province
Opening hours: Monday - Sunday, 9:00 -17:00
Email address: firstname.lastname@example.org
General admission: Free
The Suzhou Imperial Bricks Museum is China’s first museum to display the culture and extant examples of Ming and Qing dynasty (1368-1911) imperial kiln bricks.
The Chinese architect Liu Jiakun and his team created an immersive historical atmosphere for the museum and its adjacent park of kiln ruins. It aims to protect a precious cultural heritage and present the little-known firing process of "imperial kiln bricks" and its profound historical and cultural connotations from various perspectives. In 2019, the museum was rated as a national 4A-level tourist attraction.
The square-shaped imperial bricks were durable flooring material exclusively made for the imperial families during the Ming and Qing dynasties. They went through a complicated and time-consuming manufacturing process and strict quality control before being chosen to pave the floor of the imperial halls, palaces and tombs. The manufacturing process itself has become a national intangible cultural heritage.
The museum is comprised of a well-preserved imperial brick kiln, a visitor center, a contemporary art exchange center, ruins of a group of kiln sites, a café and a souvenir shop.
The exhibition hall fully displays the manufacturing process of the imperial bricks. It creates a vivid reproduction of an imperial brick’s firing through a cultural relics display, reconstruction of scenes, scientific and technological simulation, and interactive games.
The imperial brick kiln is still in use today. Bricks fired with traditional technologies have been used in restoration projects of heritage buildings, such as the Summer Palace in Beijing, the City God Temple in Shanghai, and the Puji Temple in Zhejiang province.
Last Updated: Dec 15, 2020