If you are looking for something interesting to see this weekend, I've got what you are looking for!
The St. Louis Art Museum's exhibit "Power and Glory : Court Arts of China's Ming Dynasty" is in its final three days and ends this Sunday.
We had been looking forward to this exhibit for some time, but kept putting it off as we were waiting for a couple of Chinese people in my department at work to arrive for their first visit to the United States. Luckily, they finally made it here and last weekend we took them to the exhibit.
One thing I've noticed in my Asian travels is that so far, the museums I've seen do not have the ability to display and care for their artifacts in the way that modern US museums do. In fact, ancient and priceless items are often simply laid on tables, behind a rope in a building that is not even climate controlled!
Our Chinese visitors were impressed with the display, and frequently wondered if the artifacts were "real" as they were displayed so nicely and were in such great condition. They often explained various aspects of the art and other information to us, too. It was the first time they had seen and read so much of China's celebrated Ming Dynasty, though it is a period in China's history that is still revered.
For those of you who do not have a couple of Chinese friends along to read all the Chinese and discuss what is there, the museum has a fantastic alternative - they provide Apple iPods with your ticket purchase which contains short 1-2 minute clips describing much of the history and culture surrounding various artifacts.
The display runs through Sunday, and is open Friday early evening for FREE (iPod rental is $3.00 and worth it), while on Saturday and Sunday admission is $10.00 (which includes the iPod rental). I highly recommend you visit this beautiful exhibit!
For more information visit the Art Museum's page on this exhibit here.
Have a great weekend!
Photo taken with a Nikon D60, 18-55mm, f3.5-5.5 kit lens. Heavily manipulated in GIMP.