Universe within Inches: Bronze Mirrors Donated by Prof. MARK Kai-keung

12 August 2017 - 17 September 2017

Mondays to Saturdays 10:00 am – 5:00 pm
Closed on Thursdays (Except Public Holidays)
Sundays and Public Holidays 1:00 – 5:00 pm
About the special opening hours for festive holidays, please refer to Art Museum’s website.

Art Museum, Institute of Chinese Studies, The Chinese University of Hong Kong


Event Details:

Bronze mirrors first appeared in China in approximately 2000 BC, and for almost 4,000 years, there has been a great demand for mirrors in China. Chinese producers have excelled in the design, craftsmanship, and casting methods of these mirrors. Ancient people would have used mirrors to reflect images but would also treat them as gifts, works of art for display, and even religious tools. The reflective mirror fronts are usually heavily corroded nowadays and can no longer reflect clear images, but the décors on the mirrors’ backs still attract us. Thus, all the mirrors in this exhibition are shown with their decorated backs.

This exhibition features 35 mirrors donated by Prof. Mark Kai-keung. The earliest mirrors in Mark’s collection can be traced to the Warring States and Western Han periods, and the majority of them are from the Song-to-Qing period. There is a variety of mirror shapes in the collection, including square, eight-lobed, octagonal, peach-shaped, and bell-shaped, and rich decorative patterns appear on these mirrors. This exhibition is divided into four units: 1. Mirrors with animal, vegetal, figural, or architectural patterns; 2. Mirrors with mysterious images and script; 3. Mirrors inscribed with wishes; and 4. Production locations and workshops associated with the mirrors.

Event Photo 1