The bi’s significance is embodied in its longevity and exquisite craftsmanship. Jade pieces in this shape were first created thousands of years ago, before metals had been harnessed for human use. Bi were carved with a string saw and an abrasive in what must have amounted to many, many hours of work. While experts will probably never know for certain the purpose of the bi, its importance must have been paramount to have commanded such dedicated labor and resources. The result is a lasting symbol of artistry and beauty, and of commitment to a vision and purpose.
Like the bi, the Jade Circle represents a generous investment of time and resources and a commitment to embracing the unique material, aesthetic, and intellectual achievements of Asian art and culture. Jade Circle members make annual gifts of $3,000 or more to the museum for general program support. The Jade Circle helps to:
- foster a greater understanding and enjoyment of Asian art and culture
- provide education and outreach programs for students, families and adults which celebrate the more than forty Asian cultures represented in the museum’s collection
- present new and exciting special exhibitions
- conserve and expand the museum’s internationally recognized permanent collection