The China Art Palace is one of China’s largest and most ambitious art museums. It has 64,000 sq. m of exhibition space divided into 27 halls. The curators plan to collect and exhibit classic works that show the origins and development of Chinese modern art, acquired from the collections of government-owned art companies and museums.
Its opening exhibition has five parts, which do not yet have official English translations. The 600 pieces in “Shanghai Brightness” trace the origins of China’s modern art. “Congratulations from the World” features 100 pieces from seven countries. “Splendid China” features 250 works of 21st-century Chinese art, while “Historical Shanghai Contexts” includes 64 pieces.
The “Masters’ Hall” features 460 works from artists including Lin Fengmian, Guan Liang and Wu Guanzhong. The multimedia recreation of the classic scroll “Ascending the River at Qingming Festival” that was the China Pavilion’s star attraction during the Expo will be on permanent display. “Miller, Courbet and Naturalism in France”, featuring loans from the Musée d’Orsay, Paris, is due to open in November.
There are more than 1,400 art works. If you see 4 pieces in 1 minute, you will need at least 5 hours for a visit.
The route through the building is from the top floor to the lower floors. Exhibition halls 1–6 are located on the 46-meter-high floor, halls 7–10 are on the 41-meter floor, 11–13, exhibiting art works from other 7 countries, are on the 33-meter floor, the 5-meter (halls 14–24) mainly exhibits are works of famous contemporary artists, and the 0-meter ground floor (halls 25–27), records the developments of Chinese art during modern and contemporary times.
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The most recommended exhibition is the electronic edition of the Riverside Scene at Qingming Festival (清明上河图) in Exhibition Hall 5. This art work used to be very popular in the China Pavilion during the 2010 Shanghai Expo. Entry to this hall is 20 yuan (it is the only hall of China Art Palace with entrance fee).
The art works related to birthday congratulations exhibited in Hall 4 are another highlight. Visitors can appreciate these art works standing on conveyor belt.
Following Hall 4 is a hall exhibiting the works of Shanghai Art Film Studio (a studio that has made numerous excellent Chinese cartoons and films). Visitors can watch cartoons and films there.
Booking a Free Entrance Ticket
Thought China Art Palace is free, visitors need to book an entry ticket two days in advance of visiting.
The booking platform is: http://artshow.eastday.com/zhysg/, available from 10am to 5pm (closed on Saturday). You can book you ticket according your planning entrance time, and there are four periods of entrance time for your choice: 9–11am, 11am–1pm, 1–3pm, and 3–6pm. After you finish your ticket booking, you need to issue the ticket a day in advance of your visit.
Places for issuing a ticket: Shanghai Grand Theatre, Shanghai Culture Square, Shanghai Oriental, ArtCenter, Shanghai Circus Wprld, and Shanghai Art Museum.
Travel Essencials Entrance fee: free Opening hours: 9am–5pm (last entry: 4pm, closed on Monday) Exhibition area: about 64,000 square meters Address: 161 Shangnan Road, Pudong New District (浦东新区上南路161号) Transportation: Take subway line 8, and get off at Yaohua Road (耀华路).