Private collectors offer glimpse of rare Chinese treasures

Ivory Carving from the QING DYNASTY

Ivory Carving from the QING DYNASTY

Precious antiquities and treasures that traverse 3000 years of Chinese history are on display for the first time at the Chinese Cultural Centre in Sydney’s CBD.

This once in a lifetime opportunity to see rare antiques, many never exhibited before, ends on September 11.

Whether you are a lover of antiques or not, do not miss the chance to enjoy these gems in an intimate setting at the Centre.

More than 100 pieces of art, including a rare dragon-and-phoenix design blue and white porcelain jar used in Buddhist services during the Ming dynasty (1368-1644), were donated to the exhibition by private collectors from all around Australia.

Blue and white ceramic ware, first produced in mass under the Yuan Dynasty (1279-1368 AD) was at its most refined in the Ming period.

In addition, jade stones, calligraphy, ornaments, furniture and some old Chinse ink dating from the Shang-Zhou dynasties (17BC) through to the early 20th century make up only a part of this truly unique and memorable collection.

Friday’s opening ceremony was attended by many antiques experts, with four here from the Chinese National Commission of Cultural Relics and Certification in China.

Dignitaries present included NSW MP Nickolas Barton, NSW MLC Ernest Wong, China’s Consul General Li Huaxin and City of Sydney councillor Robert Kok.

A Five Colour Teapot, 1661-1722

A Five Colour Teapot, 1661-1722

The Consul General said the exhibits were all from private collections including some rare treasures “hardly seen”.

“Antiques and artworks are so much favoured today not only because of their value. To me there is a story behind each and every artefact bearing the imprint of the times,” Mr Huaxin said.

The idea to hold the 2014 Collectable Chinese Antiques and Fine Arts Exhibition came from a group of local Chinese antique lovers.

A member from the Committee for Cultural Heritage said private antique collections among ordinary citizens began in the 15th century and since then had been unstoppable.

The Chinese Cultural Centre was opened in May this year to showcase Chinese culture and encourage intellectual exchanges between China and Australia.

“China is Australia’s greatest trading partner. It is very important for us in the city to support cultural exchanges such as this because from cultural exchange comes true exchange in terms of trade, commerce and education. We can learn from each other,” Councillor Kok said.

The exhibition is a joint initiative of the Australia Chinese Cultural Channel, the China Cultural Centre in Sydney and the Australia-China Cultural Exchange Centre, a well-funded Chinese government association that promotes cultural events.

The 2014 Collectable Chinese Antiques and Fine Arts exhibition continues until the September 11 at The Chinese Cultural Centre, L1, 151 Castlereagh St, Sydney NSW 2000. Opening hours are from 10 AM to 6.00 PM.

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