Collection of East Asian Art in the Dahlem Museums

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The Collection of East Asian Art presents a comprehensive exhibition embracing the broad spectrum of art from China, Japan and Korea in Berlin-Dahlem. In addition to galleries dedicated to the individual countries, a study collection allows comparative contemplation.
Anonym Enten im Lotusteich Yuan-Dynastie, 13.-14.Jh. Hängerolle. Nachlaß Ernst Große
© Staatliche Museen zu Berlin


Dahlem Museums
Lansstraße 8
14195 Berliini


Museum für Asiatische Kunst


The collection

Archaeological items, craft objects, painting and calligraphy from China and Japan are presented in individual galleries, as are ceramics from Korea. A central exhibition room is dedicated to items of Buddhist art common to all three cultures. Sculptures made of stone, metal or wood, cult objects and religious sculptures are on display here. Among the highlights are the Japanese paintings and East Asian lacquer art works from the collection of Klaus Friedrich Naumann, a Berlin-born art dealer and collector who lives in Tokyo, as well as the Berlin collection Yuegutang with Chinese ceramics from Neolithic times up to the 15th century.

Chinese archaeology is represented with important ancient bronzes, early ceramics and objects made of jade. Characteristic examples of porcelain and lacquer-work are also on show. A small porcelain goblet from China, which dates from the early 17th century and once belonged to the art collection of the Electors of Brandenburg, is of particular cultural and historical significance. The examples of lacquer work include an imperial throne from around 1650 to 1675 with an accompanying screen. This masterpiece, made of palisander wood with an inlay of mother-of-pearl in a lacquer and gold base, will be on display in a special room of its own.

The most significant art of East Asia, painting and calligraphy, is based on organic materials which are highly sensitive to light and is hence presented in thematic temporary exhibitions alternating at regular intervals. Works from Imperial China and the 20th century are presented in individual exhibition rooms. Within the galleries for Japanese painting and calligraphy, the large-scale screens form a particular highlight. The Museum's important collection of graphic art, consisting predominantly of Japanese woodcuts, is also exhibited in an ever-changing series of temporary exhibitions.

A tea-room built by Japanese carpenters regularly functions as a space for "tea meetings". It illustrates the function of the ceramics and lacquer objects on display next door in hands-on fashion. The Klaus F. Naumann collection is housed in the neighbouring gallery.

A study collection on the upper floor presents a large number of objects offering a deeper insight into the collection. Film screenings in the video room and interactive screen presentations make for a full range of information facilities. Specially themed exhibitions complement the presentation of the collection.
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