Planning to Visit? See our updated mask and vax policies here.

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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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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

Video

The Magic Paintbrush

Leta Bushyhead, Asian Art Museum Storyteller, tells a Chinese folktale inspired by objects in the museum’s collection.

GRADE LEVEL: Early Elementary School (K-3), Elementary School (4-5)

Video

The Forbidden City

In 1420, in an effort to consolidate his control over the throne, the emperor of the Ming Dynasty moved China’s capital to a site in the North, now known as Bejing. There, he built a vast complex of palaces and administrative buildings now covering 178 acres. Because access was restricted to the imperial family and to those who had business with them, it came to be known as the Forbidden City. Learn more in this short documentary.

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

Background Information

Teahouse Alcove (Tokonoma)

Learn about the objects found in the alcove (Japanese: tokonoma, pronounced “toe-ko-no-ma”) of a traditional Japanese teahouse and the traditions of the Japanese tea ceremony.

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

Video

Nine Cloud Dream

Digitized from VHS, this video re-tells a popular Korean folktale using a painted Korean screen from the collection of the Asian Art Museum.

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

Background Information

New Year's Celebrations: China

Rituals and traditions of the Chinese Lunar New Year.

GRADE LEVEL: Early Elementary School (K-3), Elementary School (4-5), Middle School (6-8), High School (9-12)

Activity

Make a Temple Book or Japanese Screen

Students will create their own books and stamps, and can inscribe poetry or good wishes on each others books. They will then take their books with them on a pilgrimage to the Asian Art Museum, the Japanese tea garden, or the beach, and record their impressions.

GRADE LEVEL: Early Elementary School (K-3), Elementary School (4-5), Middle School (6-8)

Background Information

Introduction to Puppet Theater (Wayang) of Indonesia

For more than a thousand years Indonesians have used wayang theater as a method of addressing the conundrums of life. The lively puppet traditions of South and Southeast Asia have portrayed epic stories that shrank the cosmos down to a miniature world. The vast expanse of the earth could symbolically be reduced to the few feet of a puppet stage. The puppeteer’s lamp became the sun, throwing light on myriad creatures who, in their nobility or baseness, make up the world.

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