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Museum Hours
Thurs: 1 PM–8 PM
Fri–Mon: 10 AM–5 PM
Tue–Wed: Closed
Cafe Hours
Fri-Mon: 10 AM—4:30 PM
Thurs: 1—7:30 PM
Location
200 Larkin St.
San Francisco, CA 94102
415.581.3500
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Background Information

Buddhist Manuscripts (Sutras) of the Goryeo Dynasty (918-1392)

The religious fervor and opulence of the Goryeo dynasty (918-1392) can be seen in the intricately hand-copied sutras (the teachings of the Buddha) that date to this period. Korean monk-scribes were commissioned by royals, aristocrats, and individual high-ranking monks to write the sacred words of the Buddha by applying pigments of ground gold and silver to deep indigo–dyed mulberry paper. They began by pictorially narrating the sermons of the Buddha with key episodes within the sutra chapter on the frontispiece (first four sutra panels). The rest of the sutra comprised flowing calligraphy translating the Buddha’s teachings.

GRADE LEVEL: Middle School (6-8), High School (9-12), College and Beyond

Background Information

Buddhist Cave Shrines of Longmen

The central cave at Longmen, built in the late 600s, vividly asserts the union of the concept of Buddha as universal sovereign with the concept of the emperor (or empress) as the living representation on earth of that principal.

GRADE LEVEL: Middle School (6-8), High School (9-12), College and Beyond

Video

Buddha Vairochana

Jeffrey Durham, Associate Curator of Himalayan Art, discusses a painting of the Buddha Vairochana in the exhibition, Enter the Mandala.

GRADE LEVEL: High School (9-12), College and Beyond

Video

Bone, Flesh, Skin: The Making of Japanese Lacquer

In all lacquer objects, regardless of when they were produced, a resinous sap coating preserves the core material and allows for decoration. The material for lacquering is extracted from lacquer trees (Toxicodendron vernicifluum; formerly Rhus verniciflua), which is the same genus as poison oak. Learn more in this award winning documentary on Japanese lacquer.

GRADE LEVEL: Middle School (6-8), High School (9-12), College and Beyond

Artwork

Bodhisattva Avalokiteshvara, approx. 900–1000

The Bodhisattva Avalokiteshvara, approx. 900–1000. India; perhaps Nalanda, Bihar state. Stone. The Avery Brundage Collection, B63S44+.

GRADE LEVEL: Middle School (6-8), High School (9-12), College and Beyond

Video

Bali: Art, Ritual, Performance Lecture

Associate Curator of Southeast Asian Art, Natasha Reichle, trains the Asian Art Museum docents on the upcoming Bali: Art, Ritual, Performance exhibition on view at the Asian Art Museum from February 25-September 11, 2011.

GRADE LEVEL: College and Beyond

Activity

Archaeology Inventory Project

To expose students to terminology used by archaeologists and to heighten awareness of the rich discoveries in Afghanistan. Students make visual observations, write clear, succinct descriptions, form hypothesis on the function of the artwork, and investigate the influences of different cultures on art found along the Silk Road in Afghanistan.

GRADE LEVEL: Middle School (6-8), High School (9-12)

Artwork

A woman disguised as a man holding a parrot, 618–906

A woman disguised as a man holding a parrot, 618–906. China; Shaanxi province. Glazed low-fired ceramic. The Avery Brundage Collection, B65P52.

GRADE LEVEL: Middle School (6-8), High School (9-12), College and Beyond

Video

Zen Calligraphy

Shodo Harada Roshi, the abbot of Sogenji, a 17th century monastery in Okayama in Japan and international teacher of Rinzai Zen Buddhism, demonstrates his large scale calligraphy works.

GRADE LEVEL: Middle School (6-8), High School (9-12), College and Beyond