National Museum of History to reopen after over 5 years of renovation
Taipei, Feb. 7 (CNA) The National Museum of History in Taipei is set to reopen to the public on Feb. 21, after a five-year renovation of the first public museum established by the Nationalist government in Taiwan after 1949, officials said Wednesday.
In addition to expanding the museum's display space by 866.12 square meters, visitors will also have access to the top floor of the five-story museum for the first time, which was previously used to store its collection of more than 50,000 artifacts, including prehistoric colored pottery as well as modern calligraphy, according to the museum.
The fifth floor will host a special exhibition on the architectural features of the museum, which was built in the style of a northern Chinese palace, according to the museum.
Visitors will also be able to enjoy views of the Taipei Botanical Garden and the cultural and educational institutes in "Nanhai Academy," according to veteran architecture researcher Lee Chian-lang (李乾朗) at a press preview of the renovated museum.
Formally opened on March 12, 1956, the museum was built next to the lotus pond in the botanical garden and started with a collection of artifacts handed over by Japan following the World War II and items originally from Henan Museum in China, it said.
"It's not just a museum of history, but part of the development of Taiwan's history of culture," said Minister of Culture Shih Che (史哲) at the press preview.
The museum itself demonstrates how the Chinese and local cultures in Taiwan clashed and developed into what is unique to Taiwan in a diverse and free environment, the minister said.
A new permanent exhibition titled "Discover our connections, right here" features Chang Dai-chien's (張大千) 1965 painting "Morning View at Alishan" as well as "Fang-hu, squarih ritual wine vessel," from China's Spring and Autumn period (770 to 476 BCE), according to the museum.
Three of the 750 "boxes" feature copies of artifacts including works by artists in Taiwan in the museum collection, which toured more than 30 countries between 1969 and 1986 to assert the role played by the Republic of China (Taiwan) in preserving Chinese culture, as the country faced an increasingly challenging diplomatic environment.
In 1971, Taiwan under its formal name the Republic of China was forced out the United Nations, and thereafter lost many diplomatic allies.
The museum will also host a special exhibition titled "Monuments of Brush and Ink" to show calligraphy and ink painting masterpieces in its collection, as well as "Birth of the Modernist Art Movement in Taiwan" in another exhibition, it said.
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