Some of us may have heard of the 2006 film titled “Night At The Museum” starring Ben Stiller as the protagonist, together with a host of other iconic characters. In the classic film, Stiller, working as a nightguard, soon discovers that all the exhibits come alive at night.
Around the world, there are various types of museums to suit everybody, whether this is art, natural history, music, or dance, theater, and so forth. What separates the interest between Asians and Westerners though, seems to something about the way each person is brought up in the family. For some parents, cultural visits act as a kind of ‘glue’ that keeps the relationship between the parent and the child together. They look forward to discussing the historical events that happened and the relics they have seen.
Back in high school as well, our teachers would always find ways to help us expand beyond our comfort zones and attend as many exhibitions, concerts, opera performances as possible. Perhaps it is the stifling summer heat, coupled with the curiosity toward the lives of the ancient Chinese amidst the imperial palace that prompted a visit to the Palace Museum several days ago.
Roaming around through the 7 galleries, numerous questions floated in my mind. Did the emperor have a daily routine like us? Did he always have to live with consorts and eunuchs? What did he do in the event of war? Why were the ceramics on display so beautiful? Just how many square feet did each individual palace occupy?
Ironically, it is the knowledge that each exhibit will remain inside the glass container that made my questions suddenly seem so childish.
After all, isn’t it a good thing to keep that inner child satisfied?