The Best Museum Exhibit You'll Ever Visit Why you should visit the met for your Living color project; BY Nshera TUtu

As you first walk into the Astor Court (the place that the Scholar's Garden and Study is), I assure you that you'll be intrigued upon first glance. You'll see this:

http://www.metmuseum.org/art/collection/search/78870

Most entrances have doors, and are typically rectangular. Pretty cool, right? As you walk in, the first thing you see to your left is the entire garden, which looks like this:

http://www.metmuseum.org/art/collection/search/78870

Once again, really cool! As soon as I walked in, I thought of Daoism. We learned in class that Daoism focuses heavily on nature (the Dao), and focusing oneself in it. The garden is filled with green plants and rocks, and even a koi pond in the corner (which we'll focus on later!); and all of this relates Daoism!

My photo!

For example, these rocks reminded me of the Daoist concept of the Uncarved Block; or the idea that when everyone begins, they are not bad, or uncarved. However, society makes them become bad things, or carves them. All of these rocks are jagged with rough edges and curved lines; made up of all different shapes. This made me think of how these may have possibly been carved in order to display the metaphor of "carved blocks", or people shaped by society, sitting in the garden.

My photo!

This is the small koi pond in the corner of the room. When I saw the koi pond, it struck me as related to Daoism because it reminded me of wu wei, or the idea of non action. To be wu wei means to not take any actions that interfere with the natural processes of the Dao. The koi fish (not pictured here) simply did what it needed to and swam in the pond, rather than trying to jump out or another action that would interfere with the course of nature.

However, the Study relates to Confucianism. From the very beginning, you can tell it's Confucian because it deals with the topic of education and self cultivation; two things that Confucius felt quite strongly about.

My photo!

These three pictures portray Confucianism because arm chairs and desks are helpful when studying. In addition, the scroll statuette on the desk represents education.

Therefore, I strongly believe that it is necessary to visit these exhibits at The Metropolitan Museum of Art for this Living Color project. Going to the museum gave me a better understanding and a physical manifestation of the topics that were dealt with in my class. For example, it solidified my knowledge of the fact that Daoism is more focused on nature, and Confucianism is more focused on studying and education. If you'd like to see an exhibit that is the aesthetically pleasing AND it clarifies the topics you learn in class, this exhibit is perfect.

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