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Updated 10:00 AM July 27, 2009

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Don't miss: Art and intellectual ferment celebrated in exhibit, lecture

Natsu Oyobe, U-M Museum of Art research curator of Asian art, presents a lecture introducing the exhibit "Treasures Rediscovered: Chinese Stone Sculpture" at 5 p.m. Thursday in the UMMA's Alfred Taubman Gallery II.

The exhibit presents 22 Chinese stone sculptures from the Han Dynasty (206 BCE-220 CE) through the Tang Dynasty (618-907 CE).

The group of steles, full figures, and heads of Buddhist icons and funerary objects provides a full and insightful view of how art manifests ritual practice and how iconography reflects cultural transmission and transformation in China.

Emphasis is on works from the sixth century CE, a time of intellectual excitement and artistic creation, when change and innovation occurred in political and Buddhist centers. The exhibit is sponsored by the Center for Chinese Studies and others.

Missing link revealed

"Ida: Darwinius masillae," a new exhibit in the Exhibit Museum of Natural History Rotunda, displays a high resolution cast of a rare fossil proven to be a link between the prosimian and simian primate lineages.

The fossil has advanced front teeth and second toes like those of monkeys, and is broadly representative of what human primate ancestors may have looked like during the eocene epoch 47 million years ago.

Discovered in 1983 near Messel, Germany, but only recently made available for study, Ida (pronounced "eeda") is named after after the daughter of Dr. Jorn Hurum, the Norwegian vertebrate paleontologist who secured one section of the fossil from an anonymous owner and led the research. Ida was about 8 months old, the equivalent of a 6-year-old human.

U-M paleontologist Philip Gingerich and anthropologist B. Holly Smith were invited to study Ida. For more information go to or call 764-0478.

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