Museum Hours
Thu: 1 PM–8 PM
Fri–Mon: 10 AM–5 PM
Tue–Wed: Closed
200 Larkin Street
San Francisco, CA 94102

Installing Japanese Bronze Lions at the Asian Art Museum

Watch the installation of two monumental Japanese bronze lion sculptures on granite plinths outside the museum’s front entrance on Larkin Street. Recently acquired by the museum through a donation from longtime supporter Marsha Vargas Handley in memory of Raymond G. Handley, the 750 lb. sculptures date to the late nineteenth century and are similar to the majestic guardian lions typically placed opposite each other outside Buddhist temples and Shinto shrines. They arrived the morning of May 13, 2013 in a moving van. The first lion took its position with ease, but the second lion was a bit more difficult: The left front paw had to rest perfectly without applying pressure to the ball underneath, and to get everything just right took about three hours. This video has been sped up (over 800x).