The Palace Museum

Situated in the very heart of Beijing, the Palace Museum is a UNESCO World Heritage Site renowned for its vast holding of over 1.8 million artefacts including paintings, ceramics, calligraphy, and antiquities belonging to the imperial collections. The Palace Museum houses many nationally protected valuable cultural objects, but due to its huge scale only a small fraction (around 0.6%) of this extraordinary collection is able to be displayed to the public at any given time.

In the Mainland, museum collections are classified into rare and general cultural artefacts. The rare cultural artefacts are further classified into three grades. Among the 4.01 million rare cultural artefacts held in all museums (around 4,100) in the Mainland today, about 42% (about 1.68 million) belongs to the Palace Museum’s collection. The collection includes over 367,000 ceramics, over 180,000 textile pieces, 53,000 paintings, 75,000 calligraphy, 19,000 lacquer items and over 23,000 jade objects. In 2016 the Palace Museum attracted a record of 16 million visitors.

The Palace Museum and Hong Kong

In 2007, in celebration of the 10th Anniversary of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government, the Leisure and Cultural Services Department (LCSD) co-organised with the Palace Museum a two-part exhibition featuring 32 masterpieces of Chinese painting and calligraphy from the Palace Museum. This exhibition attracted an overwhelming 152,000 visitors despite the short duration and space constraints of the Hong Kong Museum of Art.

In 2012, LCSD signed a collaborative agreement with the Palace Museum under which annual exhibitions are co-organised to display the rich diversity of the Palace Museum’s collection. Since then, four exhibitions have been organized and each explored a theme within the collection. These exhibitions have been extremely popular with the public attracting a total of some 430,000 visitors.