Colchester Castle’s Treasures of China Exhibition

Once in a life time opportunity! Opens Saturday 30 June 2012

The international Treasures of China exhibition opens at Colchester Castle on Saturday 30 June 2012.  It will showcase seventy treasures from Nanjing Museum, the second largest museum in China.

As these objects were carefully unpacked one by one a small part of Chinese history was revealed at Colchester Castle.

Visitors will be able to explore the rise of Imperial China from the earliest Stone Age tombs to the time of the last Emperor as they let us them on a journey through 4500 years of Chinese history.

Stunning objects include a 2000 year old, life size jade suit from the tombs of the Han Dynasty rulers, an exquisite gold cicada sitting on a jade leaf worn by a Ming Princess nearly 600 years ago and the luxury items and ornaments that adorned the palace of the last of the Imperial families as the tumult of the twentieth century changed China forever.

Alongside this rich history we are celebrating Chinese crafts and the enduring appeal of animals in Chinese culture.

Cllr. Tim Young, Colchester Borough Council Portfolio Holder for Panning, Community Safety & Culture, said “This exhibition will provide visitors to Colchester a genuine, once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to experience these fascinating objects which have never been seen before anywhere in the UK and Colchester Castle will be the only place visitors can experience them before they go back to China in January 2013.”

Share with us this unique window into Chinese culture and take part in the cultural festival to celebrate London 2012 and to celebrate the spirit of international partnership.

Peter Berridge, Museums Manager at Colchester and Ipswich Museums added, “We are so pleased to have the young people from The Gilberd School in Colchester at the heart of this exhibition. They have visited Nanjing Museum in China and from that experience have helped to select objects and to shape the show. They have brought a new perspective and ideas and we hope they are as proud of their work as we are”.

This unique project has been made possible because of the support of Essex County Council and Jiangsu Provincial Government in China who have had a strong affiliation for 24 years which has brought many benefits to both regions.

County Councillor Jeremy Lucas, Cabinet Member for Customer Service, Environment and Culture said, “I am delighted that we have been able to bring this exhibition to Essex, following the highly acclaimed showing of miniature terracotta soldiers, which was a key part of the Essex-Jiangsu Festival in 2008. These two displays have provided the opening and closing of Essex’s contribution to the Cultural Olympiad – one of the largest in the country and adding a new dimension to our long-standing relationship with Jiangsu Province.”

Treasures of China is part of Eastern Exchanges, a major festival celebrating the culture and colour of the east to mark the London 2012 Games. For the next two years museums across the region will be delivering a major programme of international exhibitions and events which will unlock the secrets and stories of China, India and Pakistan. At the heart of Eastern Exchanges are the region’s young people, creating exciting news ways for visitors to experience our great museums. Eastern Exchanges is part of London 2012 Cultural Olympiad programme Stories of the World

Colchester Castle
Castle Park, High Street, Colchester, Essex
Opening times
: Monday – Saturday: 10am-5pm and Sunday: 11am-5pm
Telephone: 01206 282939

Admission Price to the Castle
Admission prices include Castle and the Treasures of China exhibition combined giving amazing value for money and a full great day out!

Adult: £6.25
Children aged 5-15: £4.00
under 5’s: Free
Retired and concessions: £4.00
Saver ticket: £16.75

Posted by Clare Kersey


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