30th Annual bell ringing ceremony
San Francisco, CA 94102
On New Year’s Eve, the Asian Art Museum marks the close of 2015 and welcomes in 2016 by hosting its annual Japanese Bell Ringing Ceremony. Members of the public and museum families and friends are invited to reflect upon the passing year and literally ring in the New Year. Following in the Japanese centuries’ old end-of-year tradition, a 2100-lb., 16th century Japanese bronze bell—originally from a temple in Tajima Province and now part of the museum’s permanent collection—will be struck 108 times to curb the 108 mortal desires (bonno) that, according to Buddhist belief, torment humankind. Now celebrating its 30th year, the bell ringing ceremony also marks the beginning of the museum’s 50th anniversary.
Museum visitors wishing to participate will be assigned numbered tickets on a first-come, first-serve basis starting at 10:00 am in South Court; 108 groups of four to six people will be assembled to strike the bell. No advance reservations will be accepted. Hands-on art activities will also be offered in the education studios during this time.
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