Tang West Market Museum is the first civilian on-site museum in China, established on the site of the West market of the Tang chang’an city. The museum occupies a total area of 15mus (mu: Chinese measurement for area, about 163 acres) land, with a construction area of 32000㎡ and display area of 8000 ㎡; including 2500㎡ on-site preservation area. The total collection of more than 20,000 pieces comprises of various cultural relics, and mainly exhibits the cultural relics extracted from the archaeological site of the West Market and also includes other meticulously collected treasures by the founder of the museum. The relics displayed cover a long period of history, of about 3000 years, ranging from the Shang and Zhou dynasties to the Ming and Qing Dynasties. The collection includes exquisite and mysterious bronze ware, splendid and colorful pottery ware, rich postures of terra-cotta figurines, brilliant gold and silver wares, gorgeous and delicate silk remains, and jade pieces of wonderful workmanship, as well as a great number of relics such as currency, Epitaph, religious and architectures; these fill the spacious museum and afford precedence to magnificent exhibitions.
Tang West Market Museum has a complete exhibition series including “Permanent Exhibition, Thematic Display, Temporary Exhibition, and Special Exhibition & Treasures Appraisal Club.” This exhibition gathers collections pertinent to history, arts and folks from private collectors, which often offers to visitors new visual experiences. The museum with its magnificent and unique design, beautiful environment, fully-functional and first-class service has surely become a successful and important architectural landmark; a cultural site of public-love and provides a prominent window for the opening of Xi’an. The museum was awarded the National 4A tourism Resorts, a title representative of the cultural industry, and the National Second Level Museum title.
The Tang West Market Museum is an important cultural and tourism project of Xi’an municipal which enables the visitors to know about silk and the commercial culture of Sui and Tang dynasty. It is also an important place for people to study, communicate, and collect information, while at the same time, it provides an opportunity for social education and a better understanding of the ancient capital’s profound history and extensive civilization.
The basic exhibition “start of the Silk Road” of the Museum, extracted from the site of the “cross Street” at northeast of Tang West Market, displays some cultural relics unearthed from this site and introduces the various trade categories which exhibit the cultural and economic prosperity as an outcome of these trading categories; the thematic exhibition “Experiences on the Silk Road” shows several traditional workmanship that existed on the ancient silk road. The temporary exhibition on the 3rd floor is a platform for transitory displays in the West Market Museum, which provides opportunities to put up exhibitions on different themes such as the culture of the Silk Road, the business culture in Tang Dynasty and so on. Special exhibitions display the inscriptions and excellent works which facilitate the appreciation of the exquisiteness of the cultural relics and allows for an insight into the history.