|Portrait of Khublai 忽必烈 by Chinese court artist Liu Guandao(刘贯道), c. 1280|
|Painting of Kublai Khan on a hunting expedition, by Chinese court artist Liu Guandao(刘贯道)|
The hunter in red hat and white fur robe on a black horse is Kublai Khan
I wondered for a while in the night, without knowing where I was. I listened to the wind, and felt the grass on my feet. Here and there, I smelled of a herbaceous scent, and realized that I was on a green prairie.
Suddenly I heard a thundering sound. The area I stood was swirling in wind so intense that it hid the stars from view. Before me it was a Mongolian horseman, with a peregrine falcon perched on his left shoulder, sitting astride an enormous black horse.
He wore a white fur robe and his familiar round face exuded a powerful yet friendly manner. His smile, glittered in the soft light of the stars, mingled with the scent of prairie... And all of sudden I recognized him––Khublai, the fifth Great Khan of the Mongol Empire (1260-1294) and the founder of the Yuan Dynasty in China...
Of course my sensory encounter with Khublai is just a dream. It reflects my personal experiences of the images, sounds, scents, and emotion from my visit to The World of Khublai Khan忽必烈的時代 at Metropolitan Museum of Art last night. If you happen to be in New York, don't miss out the opportunity to create your own sensory experience with the art during the great time of Khublai Khan.