Art of the Old World
Permanent exhibition of the Art of Asia and the Ancient Mediterranian
The National Gallery in Prague presents a new permanent exhibition in the Kinský Palace prepared in cooperation with the National Museum. The large collection of artworks from the National Gallery in Prague, the National Museum and Charles University sheds light on 7,000 years of art development and comprises some thousand artefacts of Old World cultures of Asia, Europe and Northern America. The high artistic standard of ancient cultures is documented by artefacts from Egypt, Anatolia, Assyria, Mesopotamia and Iran and, prevailingly, examples of the classical Greek and Roman art that laid the foundation for later European art. Artefacts from ancient Egypt and Nubia form an attractive prologue, followed by those from the Near East and the cultures of Cyprus and the Aegean region. A substantial part of the exhibition documents the art of the Greeks from the early Iron Age to Hellenism. The exhibition in six rooms on the second floor closes with Etruscan and Roman art. It is loosely followed by a display of Asian art in 13 first-floor rooms starting with a collection of ancient Chinese ritual bronzeware and jade artefacts dating from the 2nd to 1st millennium B. C. and an outstanding collection of Chinese funerary ceramics from the 1st millennium A. D. The palace's five main exhibition rooms gradually reveal an extensive collection of Buddhist art demonstrating the differences in artistic expression in China, Tibet, India, Southeast Asia and Japan. The following decorative arts of East Asia are presented in an entire range of bright-coloured materials, techniques and themes. The next two rooms show varied schools of Japanese and Chinese painting, calligraphy and graphic art and the exhibition ends with traditional art of the Islam cultural region.
A new exhibition space on the premises of the Kinský Palace Stables Gallery is to be used for brief theme-based displays of works from the National Gallery in Prague's Collections of Oriental Art and Prints and Graphic Art.
A wide range of lectures, programs and art workshops put on by the Education Departments of the Collection of Oriental Art and the Collection of Old Masters of the National Gallery in Prague will round out the exhibition. Visitors can create their own artworks in a 2nd floor studio equipped with artistic aids, instructions for études and publications to study in situ. The Kinský Palace also offers facilities for families with children. A shop offering popular and professional publications with art historical themes will be opened on the ground floor of the rear building.
The Collection of Oriental Art of the National Gallery in Prague is one of the round one hudred collections of Asian art that published their masterpices on the internationl web-page VCM - Virtual Collection of Masterpices. The link to the VCM pages are here: www.virtualcollectionofmasterpieces.com