Recent Archaeological Finds from Northern China Presented in Exclusive Exhibition at The Clark
An exhibition “Recent Archaeological Finds from Northern China” opened Saturday, June 16, 2012, at The Clark and runs through October 21, 2012, featuring rare Chinese burial objects in an exclusive exhibition that considers both the discovery and the impact of modern Chinese archaeology. The exhibition features objects recently excavated from sites in the Shanxi and Gansu provinces and never before seen outside of China, including a full-size stone sarcophagus discovered intact in 2004.
The exhibitions are part of The Clark’s current cultural exchange initiative with China and were inspired by a scientific expedition to Northern China undertaken by The Clark’s founder in 1908 to document the region’s terrain, ecology, and meteorological conditions. In 2008, the Clark initiated a series of cultural exchange programs through China’s Ministry of Culture to connect Sterling Clark’s pioneering work in China with contemporary audiences. It is through these efforts that special permission has been granted to allow these rare archaeological objects to travel to America for exhibition at the Clark
The 2012 exhibitions also commemorate the 100th anniversary of the publication of Through Shên-kan: The Account of the Clark Expedition in North China, 1908–9, written by Sterling Clark and naturalist Arthur deCarle Sowerby to document the events and findings recorded by their expeditionary team during the 17-month trek across the remote regions of Northern China.
“At a time when recent archaeology is changing China’s evolving sense of its own history, it is important to explore how these kinds of discoveries are affecting contemporary China’s reconsideration of its past,” says Michael Conforti, director of The Clark.
“This exhibition not only celebrates the magnificent objects discovered through archaeology, but also examines how recent archaeological finds are influencing modern China’s sense of its cultural identity.”