Day By Day

Saturday, July 04, 2009

China Diary -- Part 30 Wuhan

In Wuhan we visited the Hubai Provincial Museum, a magnificent, world-class collection that features artifacts from the Tomb of Zenghouyi [Marquis Yi -- a fifth-century BC imperial official]. It is a magnificent assemblage of weapons, bronzes, ceramics, and lacquers -- one of the great treasures of the world. Here are a couple of examples:

The highlight of the exhibit, at least for me, was a collection of musical instruments including this magnificent bronze bell assemblage.

The museum also contained a fascinating anthropological display.

China is quite proud that several early hominins have been discovered there, and the state is pushing hard on an "out of Asia" theory of human origins. Several of the displays were of fossils purported to show anatomical continuities between early and modern Asian populations.

I like museums and was enchanted by the exhibits, but apparently not everyone was as taken by the experience as was I.

We couldn't linger because we were scheduled to attend a concert in which musicians played instruments modeled on the ones we had just seen in the exhibits, so we assembled and walked over to the concert hall.

When we arrived an earlier show was just letting out. Here are a few of the actors. I don't know just what they represent, but they certainly are striking.

Here's the show we saw.

Interesting, but I would have preferred a little more time with the exhibits.