Terracotta Army invades Bangkok

A chariot with terracotta horses.

There is no need to fly to China to see the 2,700-year-old Terracotta Army of the Qin Dynasty as the world-renowned artefacts are marching to the National Museum Bangkok from Sunday until Dec 15.

To celebrate the relationship between Thailand and China, this is a collaboration of Thailand's Fine Arts Department with the Shaanxi Provincial Cultural Heritage Administration, Shaanxi Cultural Heritage Promotion Center and Qin Shihuang's Mausoleum Site Museum.

Located in Siwamokkhaphiman Hall, which was once a part of the Front Palace, the exhibition entitled "Qin Shi Huang: The First Emperor Of China And Terracotta Warriors" will display more than 100 artefacts that reflect the grandeur of the Qin Dynasty.

The highlights include some life-size archers, housemaid-inspired figures from the Han Dynasty and auspicious animal figures like pi xiu made from gold and emerald that showcase the first-class craftsmanship.

In Bangkok, the exhibition is divided into four zones. The West Zhou Dynasty room is designed to be a time capsule, travelling back to the days when China still had seven kingdoms. Inside, visitors can learn how they had combined craftsmanship and wisdom to develop the advanced metal technology for daily life and agriculture.

An archer-like figure. photos courtesy of Fine Arts Department

The Qin Shi Huang room will educate visitors how the first emperor conquered the seven kingdoms and launched administrative reform. Besides creating monetary systems and the Chinese written language, Qin Shi Huang also enhanced public utilities and built the Great Wall of China. Conveying the belief in life after death, the Mausoleum Of The First Qin Emperor room will showcase a rare collection of ancient lifelike figures of generals and imitation chariots with terracotta horses as well as other warriors made from 337-322 BC.

In the Han Dynasty room, visitors can explore the Silk Road -- the ancient trade route that ran from China to Southeast Asia, Persia, the Arabian Peninsula, Africa and Europe. This was the golden era of Chinese arts and civilisation.

The museum is open from Wednesday to Sunday. Admission is 30 baht for Thais and 200 baht for foreigners. For more information, call 02-224-1402.