Category Archives: Museum/ Art Gallery Exhibitions

The First Emperor…


Open until March 13th at The Art Gallery of New South Wales.

Muffled footsteps echo in a darkened room. Whispers of an anticipated mystery, an ancient beauty in bronze and clay. A history is captured at a reasonable distance. An ancient culture preserved for an intended eternity…

One metre…

                          One foot…

A great wall is divided by dominance, provided for protection, and broken by war. Over mountains and through valleys, a border is formed. A thirteen year old boy becomes Emperor – the first Emperor. Consumed by ideals of immortality, grasping for perfect protection, an army of clay is ordered to be made for his transition into an afterlife.

The boy’s Eternal City is a dream where musicians dance with wild swans and chariots charge out into an endless sky. Art falls to its hands and knees at this paradise dedicated to a powerful young man, a troubled young man. A life’s ambition becomes a reality, a statuesque force, a memory in gold, topaz and jade.

However, it is bronze that sustains his seal and holds his culture firm for thousands of years. It is bronze that leaves clear traces and makes us marvel at such an advanced society.

The soldiers are his symbolic testament, his individual portraits trapped in time. They become timeless.

Commander and chief: undiscovered.

Motionless emotion.

Feet face forward.

Hands grasp weapons.

Hair back tight.

Head face up.

Look straight ahead.

Protect me, stay with me forever. Comfort me throughout my everlasting walk.

I am untouchable. I am the mountain.

We see only a symbol, a meaning, a modern translation. There’s a proud ownership that speaks volumes in between interwoven lines.

Lines of servitude that stand at attention are but a token of a great many discovered. Shapes preserved for thousands of years, hidden and waiting for an intrusion.

One fingernail. One strand of hair.

Layer upon layer equals hours, days and weeks of forced labour.

You are worth one hundred and fifty days. You are his artistic purpose. Half a year for one result, for one man, for an immortal sentiment.

We witness history in art, an incomparable chance discovery.

A simple glance.

Is it chance that haunts us? Is it the mere idea that something so vast can be hidden from view for so long?

It ends with an alarm and a hasty farewell. We have disturbed the undisturbed. We have witnessed something that isn’t inherently ours.

Heavy, earth bound warriors stand in silence once more.

Exhibition Details: The First Emperor – China’s entombed warriors

Open until the 13th March 2011.


  • $20.00 adults
  • $15.00 members/concession
  • $55.00 family (2 adults + up to 3 children)
  • $5.00 student in booked school group
  • $15.00 children 5-15 and full-time students. Under 5 free


– C


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Filed under Museum/ Art Gallery Exhibitions, Poetry

Review: “Paths to Abstraction” @ The Art Gallery of NSW…


It’s always going to be a good day when you dedicate it to doing something beautiful…  

Monet, Gauguin, Picasso… the list goes on. However, the exhibition itself was fairly unimpressive. The limited number of actual paintings, the obscurity of the titled works and the overall expense really made it disappointing. Damn you anticipation for making everyone want so much more…  

"Over 150 pivotal artworks by the pioneers of modern art"....(half of them are tiny sketches - I'm not sure I'd call them truly 'pivotal')...


It reminded me of the time I spent wandering about the Museum D’Orsay in Paris. They had original Van Gogh’s coming out of their ears and the admittance wasn’t terribly much for a young adult. Of course, there’s always a price with special exhibitions, but surely reasonable prices should be set in place in order to attract a larger populous. Even the Sydney Opera House disallows student prices in some circumstances. Come on, Sydney – let the students in by making the Arts affordable.   

In any case, it’s always a lovely experience to take some time to have a peek at originals by some innovative artists. Picasso’s sharp brushstrokes, Matisse’s exaltation of colour – it’s truly a feast for the eyes.   

It’s just a big shame that there isn’t more to this exhibition. I wanted to be blown away, not mildly impressed. Also, the MCA, (Museum of Contemporary Art), was basically closed today and will be until early September – very disappointing. At least admittance is free.  


– C


Filed under Museum/ Art Gallery Exhibitions