To celebrate its 100th anniversary, the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City will open exhibits of Asian art, including lacquer, fabric, and textiles. The exhibit opened in January of this year and will stay open through the spring of 2016.
The New York Times reports that the lacquer show includes works that were donated by Florence and Herbert Irving, a donation which included dishes, boxes, some of which feature real mother-of-pearl. Silk, an important product of China’s history, will also be featured: three pieces from the Tang dynasty will be available for viewing as well as a Song dynasty tapestry and Yuan dynasty cloth.
Asian art has long been a part of the Met’s collection, though it did not have an official section until one hundred years ago, according to the museum’s release. The Met is proud of its collection, explaining: “The Museum’s comprehensive art displays, presenting more than five millennia of Asian artworks, enable audiences to explore firsthand the richness, sophistication, and complexity of Asia’s wide-ranging artistic traditions.”
The centennial celebration will feature nineteen exhibits and installations. Currently running are Korea: 100 Years of Collecting at the Met, Discovering Japanese Art: American Collectors at the Met, Celebration of the Year of the Ram, and Sacred Traditions of the Himalayas, among many others. You can view a complete list of past and upcoming exhibits here.
Thomas P. Campbell, director of the museum, acknowledged that the celebration could not take place without the contributions of many generous donors in a March press release. “[The donors’] generous gifts are a testament to the exceptional work that has been done over the past 100 years to create an Asian art collection unrivaled in the West,” he says. “They also point to an outstanding future that will continue to build on this legacy.”