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Iconic Painting Causes Crowd Disturbance in Japan

 

 

A show of choicest cultural relics from Beijing's Palace Museum was unveiled with ceremony on Friday in Japan's Tokyo National Museum in honor of the 40th anniversary of the normalization of China-Japan diplomatic relations.

Outside the museum gates was a sign saying it was an 80-minute wait in line to view the scroll. Museum officials say there were incidents among those lining up to see the exhibition, due to the popularity of the painting, which was produced some 1,000 years ago.

The work is one of 200 exhibits that mark the 40th anniversary of the normalization of Sino-Japanese relations in 2012.

Those masterpieces include calligraphy and paintings not yet shown outside the Palace Museum by artists in the Song (960-1279) and Yuan (1271-1368) dynasties, including court dress and other accessories used during the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911).

The exhibition, "Two Hundred Selected Masterpieces from the Palace Museum, Beijing," will last from January 2 to February 19. The exhibits are selected from more than 1.8 million pieces in the collection of China's Palace Museum.

Many of the paintings and calligraphic works on show had never left China before because of their priceless value. A centerpiece of the exhibition is "Qingming Shang He Tu" (Riverside Scene at the Qingming Festival) by Zhang Zeduan, a painter from the Northern Song Dynasty (960-1127). The scroll features some 800 characters, in addition to many horses, carriages and shops on the streets of Bianjing and boats on the river.

But keeping such national treasures safe is no small task.

Masami Zeniya, the executive director of Tokyo National Museum stated that they have put in place the highest security standards for “Qingming Shang He Tu”.

"When the Tokyo National Museum borrows a work of art, we ensure it is examined thoroughly, carefully packed and securely transported to the display room. We have put in place the highest security standards for the Riverside Scenes at the Qingming Festival, just as a world renowned work deserves, and have spared no effort in ensuring its safety prior to and during the exhibition," said Zeniya.

"For instance, we made special security arrangements including using special vehicles and extra security staff to transport the artwork from the airport to the museum. In addition, the Japanese government passed a law last year requiring the government to compensate any loss if an artwork is stolen or damaged. We are therefore fully prepared for Riverside Scenes at the Qingming Festival, as well as other selected masterpieces from the Palace Museum in Beijing," added Masami.

"When the Tokyo National Museum borrows a work of art, we ensure it is examined thoroughly, carefully packed and securely transported to the display room. We have put in place the highest security standards for the Riverside Scenes at the Qingming Festival, just as a world renowned work deserves, and have spared no effort in ensuring its safety prior to and during the exhibition. For instance, we made special security arrangements including using special vehicles and extra security staff to transport the artwork from the airport to the museum. In addition, the Japanese government passed a law last year requiring the government to compensate any loss if an artwork is stolen or damaged. We are therefore fully prepared for Riverside Scenes at the Qingming Festival, as well as other selected masterpieces from the Palace Museum in Beijing."

Editor: Liu Xiongfei

 

 


 
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