XJTLU Museum Culture Lecture Season 2: The Leading Museums 1 - Suzhou Museum


Themed on “The Leading Museums”, the Second Season of XJTLU Museum Culture Lecture highlights gurus from renowned museums. Invited by the University, they share expertise and legacy of museums, which enables XJTLU staff and students to learn more about various museums, history and culture without leaving the campus, and deepens the bonds between the University and off-campus museums.

Event Details

  • Title: Suzhou Museum: City, Museum, and People
  • Date: 25 April 2018
  • Time: 2:00pm - 4:00pm
  • Venue: XJTLU Museum (123W, Central Building)
  • Language: Chinese (Bilingual slides and onsite translation support from volunteers)
  • Register: send “Name +contact number+ Culture Lecture” to [email protected]


Mr Chen Ruijin
Director of Suzhou Museum
Member of Chinese Museums Association’s Standing Committee

Mr. Chen graduated from Nanjing University’s History Dept. with a B.A. in Archaeology and has profound expertise in artifacts and museums. He was awarded “Young & Middle-aged Experts with Outstanding Contribution to Jiangsu Province” in 2014. He started the series exhibition “Four Masters of the Ming Dynasty” in 2012. In particular, “Wu School Painting Series: The Art of Wen Zhengming”, an exhibition he organized in 2013, made to the top 10 selected exhibitions in China (11th annual selection). He focuses on museum management and artifact authentication in his research, and published a series of influential articles. He is the chief editor of many publications, such as The Social Roles of Wen Zhengming and The Dream Life of Tang Yin. During his tenure, Suzhou Museum won various awards and honors, ranking “No. 8 in China’s National Level-1 Museum” in the 2012 annual assessment. Specifically, it was awarded the “Most Creative Museum of China in 2013” and “Advanced Unit of China’s Cultural Sector”, and listed among the first batch of “Model Unit of China’s Museum & Cultural Sector”.

Introduction of Suzhou Museum

Established in 1960 on the relics of Li Xiucheng (Military leader of the Taiping Rebellion)’s mansion, Suzhou Museum is among the first batch of Major National Historical and Cultural Sites, boasting well-reserved dwellings during the Taiping Rebellion in China. It serves as a local-level comprehensive museum, where artifacts are stored, preserved, researched and displayed for educational and other purposes.

Famous architect Mr. Ieoh Ming Pei has drawn upon traditional Suzhou architectural style when designing the new venue of Suzhou Museum. Consisting of several yards and buildings, the new venue’s style is perfectly compatible with its surroundings. The main yard could be deemed as an extension or modern version of Humble Administrator’s Garden to its North. On Oct. 6, 2006, the Museum was open to the visitors. Covering a land area of 10,700 square meters, the Museum has a gross floor area of 26,500 square meters (including newly-built areas of 19,000 square meters) when taking into account the relics of Li Xiucheng’s mansion.

The Museum boasts an extensive and diversified collection, including many rare national treasures. Each exhibition hall echoes with Suzhou gardens and the Museum in terms of overall style, which is delicate and simple. The well-arranged layout demonstrates the essences of Suzhou gardens, i.e., what beholders see changes as they move; each window and doors serve as a perfect frame of the landscape, and all elements supplement each other. As a result, the landscape in the Museum is effortlessly well-structured, diversified, scattered yet coherent. The Museum has attracted a large crowd for each exhibition, from the collection of Zao Wouki, Cai Guoqiang and Xu Bin’s works it displayed shortly after its opening, to those of Xu Beihong, Pan Yuliang, Lv Fengzi etc..