Two exclusive Chinese exhibits coming to Children’s Museum

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In May of next year, the Children’s Museum of Indianapolis will display two new exhibits that won’t be seen anywhere else in the entire world.

On May 10, 2014, the entire museum will transform into an immersive and authentic Chinese experience through the creation of two exhibits – Terra Cotta Warriors: The Emperor’s Painted Army and Take Me There: China.

The Children’s Museum is working with the Shaanxi Provincial Government to plan Terra Cotta Warriors: The Emperor’s Painted Army, the first experience featuring real Terra Cotta Warriors and designed with hands-on activities for families to bring the incredible story to life. Artifacts from the Terra Cotta Warrior site have only visited a handful of cities in the United States. The plan is for this one-of-a-kind exhibition about The Emperor’s Painted Army to only be produced and seen in Indianapolis – nowhere else in the world.

The museum expects to have more than 100 artifacts in this exhibit, including real Terra Cotta Warriors, some never before seen by the public. The remarkable army of thousands of clay soldiers was created by the first and youngest emperor of China. The figures, dating from about 200 B.C., were discovered in 1974 by some local farmers digging for water.

“Our vision of the exhibit will focus on new research and the real science behind the bright paint that once made the emperor’s painted army so vibrant and why these clay figures are a significant part of China’s history,” said Dr. Jeffrey H. Patchen, president and CEO, The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis.

The second exhibit, Take Me There China, will be a separate, permanent exhibit which will be one of the largest comprehensive exhibits on contemporary China ever produced in the U.S.

Visitors will board a modern Chinese airliner and fly over the Great Wall, the Forbidden City, and other iconic and culturally significant sites in the world’s most populous country before “landing” in Beijing. Adults and children will be able to explore ancient customs and modern activities through art, music, food, tea culture and ancient Chinese medicine. In a special immersion experience, families will have the opportunity to learn firsthand about Chinese celebrations, traditions and even learn martial arts “basics” through the museum’s partnership with the famous Shaolin Temple, the home of Chinese Kung Fu.

”Learning exhibitions of this magnitude introduce residents and visitors to the rich culture and traditions of Hangzhou and strengthen our connection and friendship with this great sister city,” Indianapolis Mayor Greg Ballard said.

These exhibits are supported in part by the Eli Lilly and Co.Foundation. In anticipation of the announcement, Robert L. Smith, president of the Foundation, said,Take Me There: China and Terra Cotta Warriors: The Emperor’s Painted Army are powerful experiences that will foster understanding in a way that goes far beyond textbooks, television or even the Internet. These hands-on immersive experiences offer a unique opportunity for families to learn about the diverse country that is rapidly becoming one of the most consequential nations in the world.”

The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis is a nonprofit institution committed to creating extraordinary learning experiences across the arts, sciences, and humanities that have the power to transform the lives of children and families. For more information about The Children’s Museum, visit www.childrensmuseum.org, follow it on Twitter @TCMIndy, Facebook.com/childrensmuseum and YouTube.

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