Medieval Castle Rebuilt with Medieval Technology

Coming Exhibition: Dolce Vita? From the Liberty to Italian Design (1900-1940)

“Dolce Vita? From the Liberty to Italian Design (1900-1940)”

Who:  Musée d’Orsay 

When: Apr. 14, 2015 – Sept. 13, 2015 (View Hours Here)


Musee d’Orsay
1 Rue de la Légion d’Honneur, 
75007 Paris, France

How Much:  (View Pricing Here)

More Information: Here

“In Italy in the early twentieth century the decorative arts were used to interpret the desire for progress of a nation that had only just found its unity. Cabinetmakers, ceramicists and glass-makers all worked together with the leading artists, creating a veritable “Italian style”.

This period of extraordinary creativity is recalled through around a hundred works in a chronological display. The “Liberty” style, which came into its own at the turn of the century, is recalled with designs by Carlo Bugatti, Eugenio Quarti and Federico Tesio mixed with works by the Divisionist painters. A second section is devoted to Futurism, its esthetic inspired by progress and speed extending to every aspect of life.

Later, the return to classicism in Italy came in various guises, finding its expression in the ceramics of Gio Ponti or the glass creations of Carlo Scarpa, up to the stern language of the “Novecento”.
Meanwhile, the rationalist style marked the advent of modern “design”.“

Royal rickshaw comes home, to be displayed in central Vietnam

“Royal rickshaw comes home, to be displayed in central Vietnam”

via “Tuoi Tre News”

A rickshaw which belonged to a king of the Nguyen Dynasty (1802-1945), Vietnam’s last monarchy, has finally arrived home after some 100 years being away and will be put on display in the central region next week as a happy ending for insiders’ unprecedentedly concerted efforts.

The rickshaw, which was gifted by King Thanh Thai (1879-1954), the 10th king of the Nguyen Dynasty, to his mother during his lifetime, is considered a royal treasure which is highly cherished for its technical, aesthetic, cultural, and historical value.

The prized item was custom-made from “trac” wood encrusted with conch and boasts sophisticated carvings.

The rickshaw will be displayed at an exhibition, which is poised to run on Wednesday at Dien Tho Palace, part of the UNESCO-recognized Complex of Monuments in Hue City.

The palace is a prominent highlight in Hue, the capital city of the central province of Thua Thien-Hue.

The homecoming is the fruit of Vietnamese culture authorities’ campaign, with the leader of a Paris-based museum giving up its legal right to purchase the object and fund-raising efforts.

At an auction in Tours, France on June 13, 2014 of various treasured items, including King Thanh Thai’s rickshaw, Vietnam’s people won the bid for the vehicle for €45,000. The item fetched €55,800 including organization fees.

In an unexpected twist, Katia Mollet, a curator of the Guimet Museum, declared that France had the right to buy the rickshaw for the same price.

State-run organizations in France were entitled by law to purchase the items at the same price as that offered by the auction winners.

The Vietnam Embassy in France and Vietnamese culture authorities persevered in talking the French museum’s leader out of the intention, and sought for support from French cultural agencies and experts on Vietnamese culture for Vietnam’s bid to purchase the rickshaw.

Some days following the auction, the Guimet Museum, which is well known for its painstaking conservation of a number of Vietnamese artifacts and has helped promote them through its exhibits, gave up its right to buy the rickshaw.

Buu Y, a respected culture researcher in Hue, was taken aback by the full-length details of King Thanh Thai’s rickshaw in a record kept by the French auction company.

According to the auctioning record, the king sold his rickshaw and bed – another royal treasure – to Prosper Jourdan, head of the king’s escort team, who took it to France in 1907.

The rickshaw has seen repairs to and restoration of some of its parts since, the record added.

Jourdan’s heirs later decided to put these two invaluable items up for auction and expressed their wish that after the auction, they will be displayed in Hue, which was Vietnam’s imperial capital during the Nguyen Dynasty. . . .


Han relics on show in Paris

Han relics on show in Paris

by Lin Qi via “China Daily

Han relics on show in Paris

Valuable Chinese relics are to be exhibited in France, giving European visitors a glimpse ofthe rich traditions of the Han Dynasty. Lin Qi reports.  It is probably the largest exhibition of Chinese relics outside thecountry. Curators describe it as “an unrivaled show” as itexplains why the majority of Chinese are called the Han peopleand why they speak the language of Han people and write Hancharacters. The exhibition, Han Dynasty, will open at the MuseeGuimet in Paris in October, and will display about 457 artifactsthat bear testimony to the dynamism of the Middle Kingdom.

The exhibition, which celebrates the 50th anniversary of theSino-French diplomatic relations, will present a retrospective ofthe Han Dynasty (206 BC-AD 220), the empire that hadprofound and long-lasting influences on Chinese history.Antiquities, including dozens of national grade one collections,are on loan from 27 Chinese museums and cultural institutions.They provide various perspectives on the dynasty’sadministration system, its agriculture, its alliances with borderingcountries and the start of Silk Road through which itcommunicated with the West.

“The exhibition will demonstrate the most complete and beautifulgems of the Han Dynasty, helping people to understand the foundation of Chinesecivilization,” says Sophie Makariou, director of the Musee Guimet.

“One of the highlights of the exhibition is the juxtaposition of archaeological discoveries made over the past five decades,which continue to renovate Chinese archaeology.”

These breakthroughs have been largely achieved during burial excavations, with the objectsfound revealing the relationship between emperors and feudal princes. Terracotta warriorsare some of the best examples of the imperial power, which come from the mausoleum of LiuQi (188-141 BC), the empire’s fourth emperor, which has been turned into a museum in Xi’an.Visitors will also see lamps and incense burners from the tomb of Liu Sheng (165-113 BC),son of Liu Qi and titled Prince Jing of Zhongshan. . . . .


“Sino-France Cultural Exchange In Beijing”

Shared in honor of the exhibition recently held in Paris ~ “The Villa of Dr. Jean Bussiere (1872-1960), a French Doctor in Beijing.”**DB

“Sino-France Cultural Exchange In Beijing”

by Vanisa Wei via “iDigest”

From the beginning of 1900s to 1930s, there were a number cultural exchanges between China and France in the northern part of Xishan (the Western Hills), in the Haidian District of northwest Beijing. If the Haidian District Government can take full advantage of the history in that area and make scientific planning to develop the available resources, it will not only improve the local economy but raise the brand awareness of that area.

Important Historical Figures


Andre d’Hormon (1881-1964)

D’Hormon, with another two Chinese educators Cai Yuanpei and Li Shizeng, initiated a work-study program for Chinese students studying in France around 1920. He also persuaded the French Government of the times to establish the Sino-French University and its affiliated institutions in Beijing. These facilities can provide language and other trainings for students prior to going to France. Through this program, a number of important figures in Chinese history, first Premier of the PRC Zhou Enlai and major reformist Deng Xiaoping among them, were fostered. .

At that time, d’Hormon was a professor at Peking University. During his tenure, who should be a librarian in the Peking University Library but Mao Zedong, later the first president of the People’s Republic of China. Whenever d’Hormon needed to borrow a book from the library, Mao would deliver the book to the professor in person, according to the Brochure of Sino-France Cultural Exchange in Beijing by Publicity Department of Beijing Haidian District Committee of the Communist Party of China.

D’Hormon lived in Beijing for 48 years, returning to France in 1954. He used his last 10 years to proofread the French edition of A Dream of Red Mansions, translated by Li Zhihua, a graduate from the Sino-French University. It should be noted that d’Hormon translated some of the poems from A Dream of Red Mansions in a style of ancient French poetry based on the Chinese poems original meaningsso that French readers might better understand the Chinese classic. The French edition of A Dream of Red Mansions was published posthumously and was well received by French readers.

D’Hormon remained a bachelor all his life and left behind no children. He spent almost half of his life in China and devoted the rest of that life towards researching Chinese culture after he returned to France.


Dr. Jean Bussiere (1872-1960)

Dr. Jean Bussiere came to China in 1912 and worked as a physician in Beijing’s French Legation Office . Later, Bussiere worked as the campus doctor at Yenching University in Beijing. When the Sino-French University was founded, Bussiere acted as the chief executive director.

Dr. Bussiere spent much of his life in the Xi Shan areaof Beijing. With superior knowledge regarding medicine, many nearby villagers visited the doctor seeking treatment for various maladies. Much of the time, Dr. Bussiere treated them for free., making him a popular figure in the area..

Bussiere was a key figure within the circle of French expatriates living in China. The living room of Xi Shan villa was an important place for Beijing’s French population to congregate. He accompanied the French poet-diplomat and Nobel Prize winner Saint-John Perse on his travels through north China to help the latter know more about China.  . . .