Lectures & Special Events   


-Curator's Circle and Asian Art Association Lecture Series-

Wednesday, June 21, 2017, 6:30pm

What Was the Terracotta Army For?

Eugene Y. Wang

The First Emperor’s tomb complex, with its auxiliary pits filled with thousands of life-size terracotta figures, has been hailed as the Eighth Wonder of the World. Other than the massive scale of the underground formation, what is it that we should really wonder about? Mysteries abound. Join Professor Eugene Y. Wang of Harvard University to explore; why do these figures wear strange slanting hairdo rarely seen at the time? Why do the terracotta army and the emperor’s “spirit carriages” face opposite directions? If the body is unreliable, as studies of Chinese belief indicate, how was afterlife imagined? Was the tomb complex really about the preservation of the emperor’s corpse? Was the terracotta army there to defend the First Emperor’s tomb?

Eugene Y. Wang is the Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Professor of Asian Art at Harvard University. A Guggenheim Fellow, he is the art history editor of the Encyclopedia of Buddhism (2004). His research covers the entire range of Chinese art history. His book, Shaping the Lotus Sutra: Buddhist Visuality in Medieval China (2005) received Academic Achievement Award from Japan. He is currently completing a book on the early Chinese vital art evidenced in the First Emperor’s mausoleum complex and the terracotta army.

Image: Eugene Y. Wang. Courtesy Harvard University. 

Time: 6:30pm, June 21, 2017

Location: Sharp Auditorium, Hamilton Building, Denver Art Museum

Free Admission, RSVP requested

Ticketing through DAM: Call 720-913-0130, stop by the ticketing desk in the museum, or click here to reserve online. Create an account, or sign in with your DAM member number to finish the purchase. Prices are for AAA lecture only and do not include gallery admission.

Phone number/email for details: 720-913-0040  blittle@denverartmuseum.org