TITLE Yuan Ming Yuan: The Qing Emperors’ Splendid Gardens
DATES July 5th (Friday) through September 29th (Sunday), 2013  
LOCATION West Wing of the National Dr. Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall Chung Shan National Gallery Special Exhibit Hall

Exhibit Concept
Innovative by design, “Yuan Ming Yuan: The Qing Emperors’ Splendid Gardens” represents a comprehensive approach applying contemporary art and technology to the recreation of the Old Summer Palace in Beijing, known as the “Garden of Gardens.” It is intended to reach both national and international audiences. In the past, 3D and architectural model simulation techniques often have been used to recreate and present the Old Summer Palace through computer visualizations. However, this is the first time that archaeological artifacts of the Old Summer Palace will be combined with digital technology to develop a “fully integrated” design for an exhibition. The approach will add significant depth, content, and broad audience appeal to this historical reconstruction. Among the many exhibits about the Old Summer Palace, this exhibition is the first international effort involving cooperation across the Taiwan Strait - making it truly a milestone event.

The remains of the Old Summer Palace are today only fragments, thus making it impossible to be completely restored to its former appearance. The artifacts of its gardens and buildings have been destroyed or scattered among various collections. Because their locations and intactness have long since changed, this has completely transformed the contemporary consciousness of the Old Summer Palace. Scholars in various fields have suggested not proceeding with an on-site reconstruction, which would destroy what precious little remains. Rather, they have suggested another form of reconstruction to preserve the historical appearance and meaning of the Old Summer Palace. This approach would combine the ideas of cultural creativity and heritage preservation. A core concept of this exhibit centers on the use of contemporary art and new media technology as a way to “re-construct, re-interpret, and re-discover” the Old Summer Palace.

This exhibition represents an important breakthrough to present more viscerally these historical remains and archaeological artifacts. Although the Old Summer Palace can never be viewed again, the use of multiple levels of spatial planning in the exhibit can faithfully recreate certain facets, incorporating the imagination of audiences as well. With the interactive experiences of this exhibition, the unseen becomes visible again. Guests are invited to take a trip back in history to discover and experience the full glory and opulence of “The Old Summer Palace.”
Developed and Presented by Bright Ideas Design, Co., Ltd., Taiwan
Bright Ideas is a company recognized for its promotion of art and culture using advanced technology. It has played an important role in using new media for interpreting the collections at the National Palace Museum in Taipei. Both vision and innovation are foundations for its project development. The company was the recipient in 2004 of highest achievement and image processing awards from the International Council of Museums (ICOM) Committee for Audiovisual and New Technologies of Image and Sound (AVICOM). It also received the prestigious Silver MUSE Awards from the American Association of Museums (AAM) in 2007. More recently in 2013, Bright Ideas entered into a series of cooperative projects with the Victoria and Albert Museum in England. As a result of these international experiences and with increasing cultural exchanges between Taiwan and the mainland, Bright Ideas has become a bridge for those seeking an avenue for cross-strait cooperation and international exposure. The Old Summer Palace Administration Committee in Beijing has designated Bright Ideas as its long-term partner for its future international exhibits and park planning. In 2011, Bright Ideas took part in the Beijing International Cultural and Creativity Industry Expo, formally presenting its “Digital Old Summer Palace Project.” With its focus on digital technology and cultural marketing, this exhibit will actively promote cooperation with international museums.
The “Three Hills and Five Gardens” Historical and Cultural Area
The “Three Hills and Five Gardens” is an area in the northwestern suburbs of Beijing that once comprised the imperial gardens of the Qing dynasty. “Three” is a general term for the temporary dwellings and gardens of the emperor northwest of Beijing, while the “Three Hills” refers to Fragrant Hill, Jade Spring Hill, and Longevity Hill. The “Five Gardens” can refer to either the Five Gardens of the Old Summer Palace (Yuanmingyuan, Changchunyuan, Xichunyuan, Chunxiyuan, Qichunyuan) or the Five Gardens of the Late Qing (Chaungchunyuan, Yuanmingyuan or the Old Summer Palace, Yiheyuan or the Summer Palace, Jiyiyuan, Jingmingyuan). In 2012, the Beijing municipal government announced an important project for “Promoting the Development of the Haidian District Three Hills and Five Gardens Historical and Cultural Scenic Area.” With the Old Summer Palace as the focus, technology and culture are being integrated to create a digital complex for the arts and culture. With a global tour approved to advance this effort, the Three Hills and Five Gardens scenic area of the Old Summer Palace will become—after the Great Wall, Forbidden City, and Temple of Heaven—will be an exciting destination for the new Beijing. The project will also advance Beijing’s Haidian District as a high-end world-class cultural travel destination.

Board of Advisors
汪榮祖-中央研究院近代史研究所兼任研究員
何瑜-中國人民大學人文學院清史研究所教授
馬雅貞-清華大學歷史研究所副教授
Tessa Murdoch-英國國立維多利亞和艾爾伯特博物館(V&A Museum)雕塑、金屬工藝 、陶瓷、玻璃館副主任
Roger Smith-英國獨立史學家以及十八世紀鐘錶貿易組織專家
丁維欣-美國阿拉斯加州安格拉治大學藝術教育系教授
Dr. Darrell Bailey-美國印地安那州大學音樂科技系教授
陳仁毅 Jerry Chen-雅典襍藝術品管理顧問公司 (Art of Chen Consultancy and Management)
徐宗懋-秦風老照片館創辦人
楊兆凱-北京大學考古文博學院建築考古方向博士候選人 都料會建築文化工作室 創始人
侯皓之-中國文化大學推廣教育部學程主任

National Dr.Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall
Address
No.505, Sec. 4, Ren’ai Rd., Xinyi Dist., Taipei City 110, Taiwan (R.O.C.)
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204, 212, 232, 235, 240, 259, 261, 263, 266, 270, 281, 282, 288, 299, 504