Time revealed in a Taihu Rock

The San Antonio Museum of Art welcomed a stunning new 6.5 ton installation, a gift from Chinese sister city, Wuxi. Taihu limestone rocks are formed over millennia by water, wind, heat and cold. Scholars meditated on the twisted, porous forms as early as the 6th Century, where they remain a presiding presence in gardens today. Its placement by the Riverwalk highlights the connection of San Antonians to Nature and strengthens their bond to the city of Wuxi.

I was fascinated by the labyrinthian convolutions in the limestone, worn and grooved over thousands of years. It immediately struck me as a three dimensional embodiment of time. In one object, we can see the movement of eons and imagine the lives thousands of people who reflected on the Taihu. I’m looking forward to having a chance to mediate with fewer distractions the next time I see it.

SAMA’s Elegant Pursuits: the Arts of China’s Educated Elites 1400 – 1900 is offered in conjunction with the installation of the Taihu rock, reflecting the creative aesthetic of artists and literati, who often collected archeological objects and mediated on their deep connection to Nature.

SAMA has several great exhibits up through the end of the year, including Victorian Radicals: from the Pre-Raphaelites to the Craft Movement, which I’ll be seeing soon. On a very different note, I can’t resist ending this post with a splash of dazzling, Chihuly color, new to SAMA. 

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