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← Exhibit Unravels Mysteries of Ancient Chinese Temples Through History, Science

Exhibit Unravels Mysteries of Ancient Chinese Temples Through History, Science - Comments

Anonymous's Avatar Comment 1 by Anonymous

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Thu, 14 Jul 2011 01:34:24 UTC | #849580

Sara12's Avatar Comment 2 by Sara12

I went to see this exhibit. The statues are pretty amazing and the cave part where they show the digital reconstruction is great as well. The large Buddha hands are pretty spectacular as well; just amazing to imagine that 20 foot statue. If you are in the DC area, I recommend it.

Thu, 14 Jul 2011 01:59:13 UTC | #849582

Neodarwinian's Avatar Comment 3 by Neodarwinian

How many objects have been recovered? I would think China would be rather efficient in it's artifact recovery efforts.

Thu, 14 Jul 2011 02:27:20 UTC | #849585

Anonymous's Avatar Comment 4 by Anonymous

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Thu, 14 Jul 2011 02:56:59 UTC | #849587

foundationist's Avatar Comment 5 by foundationist

Interesting and beautiful documentary, thanks for the link. It is, however a pity that the statues cannot be returned to the original caves. I think they belong there.

The same goes for a lot of other artifacts that are currently in Museums all over the world. I once saw a documentary of how the ruins of Babylon look like nowadays, and it´s appalling. You find more Babylonian art - including the marvelous Ishtar Gate - in the Pergamon Museum in Berlin than in Babylon. I find that sad.

Thu, 14 Jul 2011 07:01:40 UTC | #849605

Luke_B's Avatar Comment 6 by Luke_B

Ref foundationist comment 5

I completely agree with your sentiment but the flip side is that at least in the Berlin Museum the artifacts are about as safe as they can be. In light of what happened at the Baghdad Museum after the fall of Saddam it's certainly something to consider. Ultimately I think it's more important that these things are safe and preserved than at home and at risk. I remember seeing the footage of the Taliban blowing up the Buddhas of Bamiyan in Afghanistan in 2001. Truly heartbreaking.

Thu, 14 Jul 2011 07:45:03 UTC | #849613

scottishgeologist's Avatar Comment 7 by scottishgeologist

Luke_B - yes, its a good point. There was a TV programme on the other night with Lyse Doucet travelling through Afghanistan - part of the programme was about the Bamiyan buddha statues. Awful cultural vandalism that was practiced there. Just grim. Huge holes where the statues used to stand

And the programme showed the actual blowing up of the statues

Incidentally, she also met Karzai's brother who was shot dead a couple of days ago.

The place is totally screwed by religion.....

Thu, 14 Jul 2011 09:07:57 UTC | #849627

foundationist's Avatar Comment 8 by foundationist

Comment 6 by Luke_B :

Ref foundationist comment 5

I completely agree with your sentiment but the flip side is that at least in the Berlin Museum the artifacts are about as safe as they can be. In light of what happened at the Baghdad Museum after the fall of Saddam it's certainly something to consider. Ultimately I think it's more important that these things are safe and preserved than at home and at risk. I remember seeing the footage of the Taliban blowing up the Buddhas of Bamiyan in Afghanistan in 2001. Truly heartbreaking.

I know, for practical reasons it is probably safer for the treasures of the antique Middle East to be stored in European and American museums. It´s just a pity that it has to be like this. And in this case, it is not even about safety, just about that the great-grandchildren of the original looters and those who bought the stuff later on won´t let it go. If I were to possess one of the articacts, I´d gladly see it restored to itsoriginal place, but the owners of such works of art are usually rich investors for whom that would be 'bad business'.

Thu, 14 Jul 2011 09:43:26 UTC | #849631

Graxan's Avatar Comment 9 by Graxan

I guess that leads us onto the the moral case that those with huge sums of money have a moral obligation to the rest of society from which they garnered such wealth. Bill Gates is a good example to follow. It's been said that on his death he is donating most of his money rather than giving it to his children and that he one of the biggest philanthropists when measured as a proportion of his wealth.

Such men should perhaps aim to buy up these artifacts and send them home to where they belong, when it's safe to do so of course.

Thu, 14 Jul 2011 09:55:20 UTC | #849633

cheesedoff17's Avatar Comment 10 by cheesedoff17

Artifacts are never safe from vandalism. The Chinese destroyed much of their own heritage during the Cultural Revolution and French Maoists attempted to enter the Louve with intent to destroy "Bourgeois Culture". Luckily they were prevented.

Thu, 14 Jul 2011 12:32:39 UTC | #849656

hemidemisemigod's Avatar Comment 11 by hemidemisemigod

Comment 5 by foundationist :

Interesting and beautiful documentary, thanks for the link. It is, however a pity that the statues cannot be returned to the original caves. I think they belong there.

The same goes for a lot of other artifacts that are currently in Museums all over the world. I once saw a documentary of how the ruins of Babylon look like nowadays, and it´s appalling. You find more Babylonian art - including the marvelous Ishtar Gate - in the Pergamon Museum in Berlin than in Babylon. I find that sad.

Yes, it's a pity that my government won't return the Parthenon Marbles (aka "the Elgin Marbles") to Greece so that they can be displayed in the New Acropolis Museum.

Thu, 14 Jul 2011 14:10:30 UTC | #849683

Veronique's Avatar Comment 12 by Veronique

Comment 7 by scottishgeologist

Thank you for mentioning the BBC programme. I hadn't seen it but found it on BBC2 iPlayer.

I couldn't stop watching it. Utterly engaging. What a different view of Afghanistan. The years have taken an enormous toll on the country and its people.

You can see where their sense of irrepressibility comes from. A strong people, a harsh country - impossible to subdue. Maybe for a while, not for long.

Thanks and cheers V

Fri, 15 Jul 2011 10:16:18 UTC | #849837