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Silk Road Ceramics at the Crow Collection

by Sarah Hennigan 7 Sep 2012 12:02 PM

Sarah Hennigan chats with Laurie Barnes, the curator of the latest exhibition at the Crow Collection.


The Crow Collection of Asian Art has welcomed a new exhibition  to its gallery called On the Silk Road and the High Seas: Chinese Ceramics, Culture and Commerce. The collection was curated by ceramics scholar Laurie Barnes for the Norton Museum of Art in West Palm Beach, Florida. A Texas native herself, Barnes was excited to work with the Crow Collection to bring this unique exhibition to Dallas. On the Silk Road explores the ways in which China has always influenced the global market, and how Chinese ceramics became one of the most valued items of trade around the world.

“I had a lot of fun doing this exhibition,” Barnes says. She was motivated largely by misguided preconceptions about China remaining isolated from Western cultures until the 17th or 18th centuries.  As Barnes explains, “the great era of overland trade started over 2000 years ago,” and ceramics quickly became a highly valued commodity alongside precious Jade. Known often as “white gold,” Chinese porcelain was developed well over a thousand years ago, long before its European counterparts began to appear.

The exhibition follows the progression of Chinese ceramics as they first gained value in the West to how they then became influenced by Western markets. Barnes makes clear the easily overlooked distinctions between items produced for trade within China or abroad, and how each of them affected history. On the Silk Road will be in Dallas through January 27, 2013. The Crow Collection is open Tuesdays–Thursdays 10:00 AM–9:00 PM, Fridays–Saturdays 10:00 AM–6:00 PM, and Sundays Noon–6:00 PM; closed Mondays. Admission is free, and donations are suggested. Stop by the gallery while this unique exhibition is in town!

Here are a few examples of the amazing pieces you can see: