Chinese Cultural Programs at The Huntington, Fall 2011
Sept. 9, 2011
SAN MARINO, Calif.—A variety of programs highlighting Chinese arts and culture will be offered this fall at the Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens. Ranging from a scholarly symposium on spirituality garden design to an exhibition of ancient Chinese bronze mirrors, these events are part of The Huntington’s ongoing series of educational programs intended to introduce visitors of all backgrounds to the rich cultural heritage of China. Many of the programs also help provide a greater appreciation of The Huntington’s Chinese garden, Liu Fang Yuan 流芳園, the Garden of Flowing Fragrance. Since its opening in 2008, the garden has become a frequent source of inspiration for cross-cultural exchange through educational programs and activities such as these.
Sept. 17–18 (Saturday–Sunday) 10:30 a.m.–4:30 p.m.
The Southern Breeze Society will present a two-day show of the Chinese art of penjing. Similar to Japanese bonsai, this horticultural art seeks to capture the essence of scenic beauty—a tree, forest, mountain range, or river bend—in a miniaturized form. (An extensive penjing garden is planned for Phase Two of the Chinese garden, currently in development.) General admission. Friends’ Hall. Information: 626-405-2100.
The Music of Li Jinhui
Sept. 22 (Thursday) 7 p.m.
The Ron McCurdy Collective will present an evening of music by Li Jinhui (1891–1967), the “father of Chinese popular music.” Li’s collaboration with American jazz artist Buck Clayton had a transformative effect on his musical evolution and ushered in an era of “Chinese jazz” that dominated the nightclub scene in Southeast Asia in the 1930s. This multimedia program will feature renowned concert pianist Jing Ling Tam, pipa and vocal artist Min Xiao-Fen, and the jazz musicians of the Ron McCurdy Quintet. Open seating; advance tickets required. Members: $10. Non-Members: $15. Tickets: 626-405-2128. Friends’ Hall.
Chinese Garden Symposium
Religious and Spiritual Concepts in the Gardens of China
Sept. 24 (Saturday) 8:30 a.m.–5 p.m.
Religion and spirituality have been significant influences in the creation of gardens in China, both private and imperial. In particular, Buddhism has had a profound connection to gardens and their owners. This one-day symposium will explore Buddhist and other spiritual ideas in the gardens of Chinese emperors, monks, and scholars. Free; advance registration required. To register, call 626-405-3503.
Music in the Chinese Garden
Oct. 5 (Wednesday) 1–3 p.m.
(and every Wednesday afternoon thereafter)
There’s something in the air in the Chinese garden. Music! Starting in October, Huntington visitors will be able to enjoy the sounds of traditional Chinese music every Wednesday afternoon from 1 to 3 p.m. in Liu Fang Yuan 流芳園, the Garden of Flowing Fragrance. A different solo musician will perform each week inside the garden’s Love for the Lotus Pavilion, playing unamplified melodies on classical instruments including the dizi, sheng, pipa, erhu, and zheng. Let the music transport you to another time and place as you stroll through one of the most magical landscapes in Southern California. General admission.
Chinese Garden Lecture
Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Ginkgo
Oct. 11 (Tuesday) 7:30 p.m.
Join Peter Del Tredici, senior research scientist at the Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University, for an in-depth look at one of the most ancient and fascinating trees on the planet: the ginkgo. Del Tredici has been studying the natural history and evolution of the species for the last 25 years. His most recent travels have taken him to remote areas in southwest China in search of wild-growing ginkgos. Free. Friends’ Hall. Information: 626-405-2100.
Chinese Art Exhibition
“Ancient Chinese Bronze Mirrors from the Lloyd Cotsen Collection”
Nov. 12, 2011–May 14, 2012
An important collection of ancient Chinese bronze mirrors spanning 3,000 years makes its first public appearance in an exhibition highlighting some 80 highly decorative pieces ranging in date from the Qijia Culture (2100¬–1700 B.C.) of pre- and early Chinese history, the Warring States period (450-221B.C.), and the Han (206 B.C.–220 A.D), Tang (618–906 A.D.), and Jin (1115–1234 A.D.) dynasties. Drawn from the collection of Lloyd Cotsen, a Los Angeles businessman, philanthropist, art collector, and member of The Huntington’s Board of Overseers, the exhibition reveals the exquisitely wrought designs and inscriptions that decorate the backs of the mirrors, exploring centuries of craftsmanship, aesthetic taste, dynastic change, philosophy, and consumer culture. Selected textile fragments provide additional social, historical, and cultural context for the bronzes. The exhibition is accompanied by a richly illustrated catalog in two volumes as well as related lectures by leading scholars in the field.
Charts of the Cosmos: Chinese Bronze Mirrors and Textiles of the Warring States through the Tang Periods
Nov. 15 (Tuesday) 7:30 p.m.
Suzanne Cahill, professor of history at the University of California, San Diego, will explore the meaning and relationship of Chinese bronze mirrors and silk textiles on view at The Huntington in the exhibition “Ancient Chinese Bronze Mirrors from the Lloyd Cotsen Collection” (opening Nov. 12). Cahill will interpret the patterns on mirrors and textiles that tell us about the beliefs, desires, and fears of the privileged classes in early China. These beautiful and luxurious objects were used both in daily life and in burial to attract good fortune and ward off evil. Over time artisans from the two different disciplines of metalwork and textiles most likely influenced each other’s designs. Free; no reservations required. Friends’ Hall. Information: 626-405-2100.
CONTACT: Lisa Blackburn, 626-405-2140 or firstname.lastname@example.org
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About The Huntington
The Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens is a collections-based research and educational institution serving scholars and the general public. More information can be found at huntington.org.
The Huntington is located at 1151 Oxford Rd., San Marino, Calif., and is open to the public Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday from noon to 4:30 p.m.; and Saturday, Sunday, and Monday holidays from 10:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Summer hours (Memorial Day through Labor Day) are 10:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Closed Tuesdays and major holidays. Admission on weekdays: $15 adults, $12 seniors (65+), $10 students (ages 12–18 or with full-time student I.D.), $6 youth (ages 5–11), free for children under 5. Group rate $11 per person for groups of 15 or more. Members are admitted free. Admission on weekends and Monday holidays: $20 adults, $15 seniors, $10 students, $6 youth, free for children under 5. Group rate $14 per person for groups of 15 or more. Members are admitted free. Admission is free to all visitors on the first Thursday of each month with advance tickets. Information: 626-405-2100 or huntington.org.