The Yuanmingyuan Museum recently unveiled its plaque at the Zhengjue Temple in Yuanmingyuan. At the same time, the "Inheritance and Guardianship - Exhibition of the Achievements of Yuanmingyuan Cultural Relics Protection" was held. With 7 returned stone pillars and more than 230 pieces (sets) of cultural relics on display, the exhibition leads the audience to look back on the hundred-year "dream journey" of Yuanmingyuan.
The Yuanmingyuan Museum covers an area of 14,300 square meters with a building area of 3,649 square meters. The Yuanmingyuan Management Office uses the existing venues of the Zhengjue Temple, accelerates the construction of the Yuanmingyuan Museum by implementing security and fire protection upgrades and adjusting the exhibition display plan.
Stepping into the Zhengjue Temple, more than 230 pieces (sets) of cultural relics and exhibits are displayed in sections, vividly demonstrate the profound historical and cultural heritage of Yuanmingyuan and the rich achievements of cultural relics protection. The 7 white marble pillars exhibited on the top floor are the star exhibits of the Yuanmingyuan Museum after their "reinstallation." After preliminary research by experts, these 7 returned pillars are believed to come from the ruins of the Western Mansions of Yuanmingyuan, with slight weathering but in good preservation. Each pillar is carved with relief floral and entwined geometric patterns, with exquisite craftsmanship.
"The carvings on these 7 pillars are Western-style vases, but inside the vases are traditional Chinese peony flowers, which reflects the cultural connotation of the integration of Chinese and Western cultures," said Qiu Wenzhong, director of the Yuanmingyuan Management Office. "The background behind the pillars uses copperplate prints of the Western Mansions. At that time, when there was no photography, copperplate prints could realistically reflect the actual scene of the building."