Arthur M. Sackler Gallery

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Arthur M. Sackler Gallery ( 640x480 )
Arthur M. Sackler Gallery in Washington, DC is the gallery of Asian art. It is one part of two galleries of the National Museum of Asian Art. The second part is called Freer Gallery.

The gallery is located on the National Mall, the grassy area between the Capitol and the Washington Monument, directly behind the Smithsonian Castle. The main entrance is situated off of the gardens of the Smithsonian Castle along Independence Avenue. Most of the gallery is situated underground, where it is connected with the second part of National Museum of Asian Art – with Freer. Although their collections are stored and exhibited separately, the two museums share a director, administration, and staff. The second museum it is connected with in the same way is the National Museum of African Art.

The M. Sackler Gallery opened for the first time in 1987. Arthur M. Sackler, a research physician and medical publisher from New York City, donated some 1,000 Asian works of art as well as $4 million toward construction of the gallery. The most precious from his gift were early Chinese bronzes and jades, Chinese paintings and lacquer ware, ancient Near Eastern ceramics and metal ware, and sculpture from South and Southeast Asia. Since the opening, the collection of the gallery expanded and today it includes also the Vever Collection, an important assemblage of the Islamic arts of the book from the 11th to the 19th century; 19th- and 20th-century Japanese prints and contemporary porcelain as well as Indian, Chinese, Japanese, and Korean paintings; arts of village India; contemporary Chinese ceramics; and photography.

Besides permanent exposition, many international loan exhibitions have been held here. Between the most famous belong Persian Art and Culture in the 15th Century (Timur and the Princely Vision), the Brush of Innocence (Yani), featuring paintings by a 14-year-old Chinese prodigy; When Kingship Descended from Heaven: Masterpieces of Mesopotamian Art from the Louvre; Court Arts of Indonesia; Korean Art of the 18th Century: Splendor & Simplicity; and A Basketmaker in Rural Japan.

The library attached to the museum is one of the finest Asian art libraries in the United States; it contains 80,000 volumes of publications.
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