The Smart Museum of Art has been awarded a $300,000 implementation grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities to support the upcoming fall exhibit Echoes of the Past: The Buddhist Cave Temples of Xiangtangshan. A major traveling exhibition that explores one of the earliest and most important Buddhist pilgrimage sites in China, Echoes of the Past mixes ancient sculpture with cutting edge digital technology. The grant will be used to fund the exhibition’s national tour to museums in Washington D.C., Dallas, and San Diego following its debut at the Smart Museum on September 30, 2010.
From the Smart Museum:
During the past six years . . . the caves have become the focus of an extraordinary research and reconstruction project based at the University of Chicago. Combining cutting-edge 3D technology with old-fashioned scholarly work, an international team of experts has photographed and scanned the dispersed objects as well as the interior of the caves themselves. Organized by the Smart Museum in partnership with the Smithsonian Institution’s Arthur M. Sackler Gallery, Echoes of the Past showcases this project through a novel combination of ancient art and new technology, uniting many of the most important Xiangtangshan sculptures with a set of innovative digital components in order to shed new light on the original beauty and meaning of the temple caves.