The upper two floors are of the Asian Art Museum are reserved for the permanent collections. These collections showcase pieces from China, Japan, Korea, India, Indonesia and Bhutan to name a few countries. It baffles the mind to think that there are pieces that have dated back over 3000 years! That’s not a typo- that’s 3, followed by three zeros. The collection is quite extensive and may require one hour to a few days, depending on the rate you walk and how many times you get lost and end up backtracking. Perhaps we just saw too many buddhas and they all began to look the same, but the layout of the museum is not very straightforward and the little map of the museum comes in quite handy.
The Asian Art museum has something for the sinophile and/or for the art admirer. Go to be in awe of the works of contemporary Chinese sculptor Sui Jianguo. Or witness the former splendor and grandeur of an ancient kingdom of Thailand. Wander the halls of the permanent collections and see how the interpretations of what Buddha looks like changes depending on which region of Asia it is from. Contrast the different relics of various periods of the same country or compare the similarities among the various neighboring Asian countries and see how they influenced one another. Or go to buy a kitschy wind-up watch with a face that has Mao, waving to the masses (yes, his hand actually moves back and forth! Well, as look as it is not broken). Tickets are $10 for adults, $5 on Thursday after 5pm, or free every first Tuesday of the month.