China Museum of Silk
Mrs. Grégoire Trudeau at China National Silk Museum, Impressed
Mrs. Sophie Grégoire Trudeau, coined as “Canada’s fashion icon”, visited Hangzhou with her husband and 7-year-old daughter, Ella-Grace, during the G20 Summit 2016. The Canadian first family have visited many places during their tour in China to get known about Chinese traditional culture, while Sophie demonstrated her deep understanding and fondness for fashion. In the afternoon of September 3, Sophie and Ella-Grace paid a visit to China National Silk Museum. The museum has just undergone its major renovation and expansion project in the past one year re-opening a new Fashion Gallery and a few more exhibits. Dr, Zhao Feng, the Museum Director, led the tour for Canada’s first lady. When they stopped at the Textile Training Center, Grace was her eyes glued to activities of painting and tie-dyeing made by children from Daguan Primary School. Sophie encouraged her to join the activity group, while she herself went on the visiting of the Fashion Gallery, sometime jokingly known as “the most luxurious dressing room”. The exhibits showcase items such as Chinese cheongsam, Chanel suits in 1960s, and dresses, gloves, feather caps, etc. for European Ladies from 16th to 19th Century, which all lit up Sophie’s eyes, “I am the right person you should invite to see this gallery…” “Sophie definitely is a stylish icon. She is so familiar with those designers.’ Said by Director Zhao Feng. When they returned to the public space, Grace had finished her weaving: a scarf of 30 cm with a loom within half an hour. She wore it in delight. On September 5, Peng Liyuan, wife of Chinese President Xi Jinping, invited the wives of state leaders attending the G20 summit to visit the China Academy of Art, and Sophie and Zhao Feng met again when the guests enjoyed “The Past and Present of Chinese Silk” exhibition, display collections from China National Silk Museum. Dr. Zhao Feng made a specific guide tour to the first ladies, particular drawn attentions on several pieces of clothes with stories in particular. For example, a piece of robe with lotus design, unearthed lately from Huangyan, Zhejiang, representing the highest level of silk weaving in the Southern Song Dynasty. It is repaired and conserved by China National Silk Museum, who owns the highest technology of textile conservation in China.
Imitation of the Lao Guan Mountain Han Mausoleum Jacquard Loom made by China National Silk Museum Unveils in Chengdu Museum’s New Branch (2016-06-20)
Early in June this year, Chengdu Museum opened its newest branch, and set up an exhibition called “Chengdu’s History and Culture”, the displays of which included an imitation of the Laoguanshan Han jacquard loom. This is the second time this loom appeared in public, the firstbeing at the “Press of Chengdu Laoguanshan Unearthed Loom”held on March 11, 2015 in Hangzhou. The remaking of the ancient loom was entrusted to the China National Silk Museum by the Chengdu Museum. This project was part of the larger program: striving to learn more about artifacts from the Han Dynasty.Other institutions participating in the program included Institute of natural science history of the Chinese Academy of Sciences and the Zhejiang College of Zhejiang University of Technology. This new loom was made to match every aspect of the old one, in terms of size, use, etc. It is already a part of the exhibition to be viewed by the public. On Oct. 11, 2015, inthe exhibition “Silks from the Silk Road: Origin, Transmission and Exchange”hosted by the State Administration of Cultural Heritage and Zhejiang Provincial Government, this loom was first showcased to the public. At the same time,China National silk Museum and Chengdu Museum announced their research findings gathered during the re-making process of this Han Dynasty Loom. In the conference,Director Wang Yi of the Chendu Museum and Director Zhao Feng of China National Silk Museum both discussed the various archaeological findings this loom helped bring into focus. Various authoritative scientific figures, including Director Zhang BaiChun of the Institute of Natural History of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, Director Mei Jianjun of the Joseph Needham Institute of the United Kingdom, Director Nosch Marie-Louise of the Danish National Foundation for Textile Research Center (CTR) and French National Academy of Sciences (CNRS) senior fellow Cardon Dominique also commented on these new findings. These experts think that the 4 Brocade jacquard loom models unearthed at the Chengdu Laoguanshan Han Loom were the first Western Han Dynasty looms to be discovered, and said that the subsequent findings filled in numerous empty holes in knowledge about China’s and indeed the world’s history of silk technology. These looms were used in the Han Dynasty to produce silk brocade, which was the most important silk item at the time. Conclusively, this piece of technology was hugely important for Chinese Culture and for the Silk Road. Not only that, it was also instrumental in advancing global silk culture, and human civilization. (translated by Bi Ran)
“Silk on the Silk Road—Chinese Silk Exhibition” unveils in Qatar (2016-03-23)
Qatar, a country situated on the intersection of Asia, Africa and Europe, is both an important Western Asian nation and an important town in the Western segment of the Silk Road. Under the “One generation, One road” banner proposed by President Xi Jinping of China, China and Qatar, countries situated at either ends of the ancient silk road, began to accelerate trade and had recently decided to host the 2016 China-Qatar Cultural Year, an event intended to advance cultural exchange between these two nations. This exhibition,co-hosted by the Ministry of Culture, Zhejiang Provincial Department of Culture, Qatar Museum Authority and China National Silk Museum, was the first of a series of cultural events. It was unveiled at 6 p.m. on March 23, 2016, in the gallery of the Qatar Museum. Princess Sheikha Al-Mayassa, accompanied by other VIP Qatari guests, was present at the opening ceremony along with the Chinese ambassador to Qatar Li Sheng, Head Commissioner of the Culture Department of Zhejiang Province Jin Xing Sheng,Head Office Manager of the Culture Department of Zhejiang Province Hu ChaoDong, and the Head of the Foreign Commission of the Culture Department of Zhejiang Province. Princess Mayassa cut the ribbon of the exhibition at the Qatar Museum, and, under the guidance of curator and researcher Xue Yan of China National Silk Museum, toured the entire exhibition. To bestow the opening ceremony with more Chinese characteristics, China invited renowned Chinese Embroidery artist Jin JiaHong, who had dedicated more than 20 years of his life to this art form, to perform traditional Chinese embroidering live. At the same time, researcher Lou Shuqi of China National Silk Museum was also performing silk weaving using a traditional loom. The exhibition received high praise from the princess, who later said that Qatar will strengthen its ties and continue to engage in cultural exchange with China. This exhibition carefully selected 95 pieces of ancient and modern artwork related to the Silk Road and silk production.Through the following four categories: the Silk Road, Silk’s origin, weaving techniques, silkworm domestication, this exhibition displays the busyness of the ancient Silk Road, Chinese silk’s beauty and the long history of China’sdomestication of silkworms.
1 On the afternoon of August 20, he is invited to make a speech: Modern Technologies Shed New Lights on Ancient Chinese Civilization, at CNSM, and offers several suggestions on the research of the origin and evolution of silk.
2 Situated at the southern bank of the West Lake, in Hangzhou City of Zhejiang Province, China National Silk Museum is the first state-level professional silk museum in the country as well as the biggest of its kind throughout the world.
3 On September 18th, CNSM held “Silk Culture Class on Campus,” and discussed silk culture with Hangzhou Kaiyuan Middle School.