After almost ten years in the Kinský Palace, the Art of Asia exhibition was moved to the southern wing of the Trade Fair Palace’s first floor, where it’s shown in the so-called open depository. The Schaudepot, a new exhibition format at the National Gallery Prague, optimizes the number of artworks accessible for immediate study by displaying them in glass showcases that allow a three-dimensional view. The open depository thus makes more than 600 artworks of Asian provenance from the National Gallery Prague available for viewing.
Sculptures and arts and crafts ranging from the oldest works of the archaic period to the 20th century comprise most of what is displayed. The works are divided into two basic thematic groups. The first presents ideological systems – the philosophy and religion of Taoism, Buddhism, Confucianism, and Hinduism – defining Asian cultures and the art of China, Tibet, India and South and Southeast Asia. The other group highlights characteristic features of Asian arts and crafts and shows works by material (stoneware, porcelain, lacquerware, and metal), techniques (such as cloisonné enamelware) and decoration.
The Collection of the Art of Asia and Africa houses more than 13,000 artefacts, the majority of Asian provenance. At present, the open depository does not display artefacts of sensitive materials – especially wooden sculptures, paintings, and prints. Until they are permanently displayed, some of the works will be selected for temporary exhibitions, while others will be restored and researched.