China in the MacDonald Gallery

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Oriental Museum

Durham University Elvet Hill

Our China gallery is named after the distinguished politician and diplomat the Rt. Hon. Malcolm MacDonald. MacDonald was a passionate collector of Chinese ceramics. His dream was to create a chronological display of the development of this most Chinese of art forms. The backbone of this gallery is dedicated to fulfilling this dream. It is a timeline of Chinese ceramic art from the Neolithic pots made and decorated by Stone Age artists through to the works of some of the most celebrated makers of the 20th and 21st centuries. The gallery also includes highlights from across the rest of our incredible Chinese collections, ranging from ancient bronze weapons to magnificent jades carved for the Emperor and his court. Don’t miss: - Tang dynasty tomb models of farmyard animals - Ancient bronze and jade items created for burial with the dead - A Song dynasty Dingware wedding bowl decorated with mandarin ducks - A porcelain shufu cup - one of the earliest types of ceramic created on the orders of the imperial court - The astronomical clock - the only other example of this type of clock is in the Forbidden City in Beijing - Jades carved in the imperial workshops of the Qing dynasty. The Oriental Museum’s Chinese collections have been granted Designated Collection status in recognition of their national and international importance. This gallery was funded by the Designation Development Fund and the Art Fund.

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Further information

Upcoming event dates:

  • Friday 1st November 2019 - Sunday 31st December 2023


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