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A mask of a man’s face smiling on the right side of the gallery also has a bit of mystery about it. Believed to be used as an ornament, the mask was purchased by the gallery in 1953 with little information. Since then, it has been dated to the 12th or 11th century B.C. Also, the material of the mask is unlike other pieces of jade in the gallery, as it has a different physical construction.
The creation of this permanent exhibit has been Wilson’s primary focus since he joined the Freer in 2006.
“It’s art for art’s sake,” Wilson said. “These world-class masterworks can focus on the key moments in Chinese art history.”