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Department of East and Southeast Asia

Contact Information

Phone: (812) 328-41-81; 328-41-22

Head of Department

Igor ALIMOV, Cand.Sc.

History of the Department

The history of the Department of East and Southeast Asia as a structural unit within the MAE falls into several stages. Its first predecessor was the Department of Asian Civilizations founded in the early 1900s and directed by A.I. Ivanov until 1925. Later it was transformed into the Department of the Far East headed by G.O. Mohnseeler and A.E. Gluskina. After the transformation of MAE into the Institute of Ethnography and Anthropology in 1933, the department was headed by N.V. K50108hner. In the course of the new reorganization (1937), the Department of India, Indonesia and the Far East was formed (headed by N.V. K50108hner, who at the same time directed the Cabinet of East and South Asia).

In 1948 the Department of the Orient was estsblished in the Institute of Ethnography in Moscow and, in Leningrad the Group of East and Southeast Asia, headed by N.V. K50108hner until his death in 1955 and then by K.V. Vyatkina and R.F. Its.

In 1970, when the Department of Australia and Oceania was merged in this group, the former was renamed the Sector of East and Southeast Asia, Australia and Oceania. In 1972 it split into two sectors: that of Foreign Asia (directed by D.I. Tikhonov, and from 1975 on, by A.M. Reshetov) and that of Australia, Oceania and Indonesia (directed by N.A. Butinov).

In the 1990s, after MAE had been established, several more reshuffles took place. Since 2002, the department has existed in its present status.

In the past, several leading figures were associated with the department (their domains are indicated in parentheses): G.A. Glovatskii (China), A.E. Gluskina, A.I. Ivanov (China), Yu.V. Ionova (Korea), R.F. Its (China), R.A. Ksenofontova (Japan), N.V. K50108hner (China), A.I. Mukhlinov (Vietnam), V.S. Starikov (China), G.G. Stratanovich (China), and D.I. Tikhonov (China), L.L. Viktorova (Mongolia), and K.V. Vyatkina (Mongolia),.

Main Research Areas

These include ethnic history of the region, modern ethnic composition and ethnic processes, social organization, traditional material culture and ideology, study and publication of the department’s collections, and history of Russian and foreign ethnology.

Department Staff

Igor ALIMOV, Head of Department, Cand.Sc.

Ivanova Elena, Leading Researcher, D.Sc. (material culture and ideology of Southeast Asia, mainly Thailand; Buddhist sculpture; history of ethnography; history of the department’s collections).

Reshetov Alexander, Leading Researcher, Cand.Sc. (problems in general ethnography; material culture, ideology, and social relationships in peoples of East Asia including Chinese, Tibetans, and Mongols, and Central Asia including Uygurs and Dungans; history of Russian ethnography).

Sinitsyn Alexander, Senior Researcher, Cand.Sc. (traditional material culture and ideology of Burma and Japan; martial arts and weapons; the samurai).

Kislyakov Vladimir, Senior Researcher, Cand.Sc. (history of the department’s collections, mostly Chinese, Mongolian, and Korean; history of MAE; history of Russian ethnography).

Sviridov Arkadii, Chief Specialist (traditional material culture and ideology of Southeast China and Japan, history of the department’s collections).

Petrova Elena, Senior Assistant, postgraduate student (ethnography of China, Han dwellings).

Samsonov Denis, postgraduate student (ethnography of Korea, Korean etiquette).

Principal Publications

Most department staff members are prolific writers (A.M. Reshetov, for example, has more than 400 publications). The most important books include those by E.V. Ivanova on Thailand and Southeast Asian clothing and ornaments, by A.Yu. Sinitsyn on the samurai and early 19th-century Japanese painting in MAE, and a series of joint monographs addressing culture, ethnic processes, etiquette, and childhood in various peoples of the region.

In 2004 a complete catalogue of the Korean collections of MAE was published in English, Russian and Korean languages. It was prepared by a former department member I.V. Suslova (currently at the department of Registration and Storage and Curator of Special Storage), under collaboration of D.A. Samsonov. In the project also participated D.V. Ivanov, L.G. Lebedeva, curators from the Department of Registration and Storage, and Korean specialists from the Institute for the Study of Cultural Heritage of the Republic of Korea:

  • Suslova I.V., Ionova Yu.V., Li N.E., Yun G.I. Pamyatniki koreiskoi kul’tury iz sobraniya Muzeya antropologii i etnografii imeni Petra Velikogo (Kunstkamera) Rossii [Monuments of Korean Culture from the Collections of Peter the Great Museum of Anthropology and Ethnography (Kunstkamera) of Russia]. Seoul, 2004. 376 p.

Other recent important publications are the following:

  • Ivanova E.V. Taiskii teatr masok khon [Khon: The Thai Masque] // Kul’tura narodov Okeanii i Yugo-Vostochnoi Azii. SPb., 1995. P. 53–77. (MAE Collection. Vol. XLVI).
  • Ivanova E.V. Ocherki kul’tury taitsev Tailanda [Essays in Thai Culture of Thailand]. Moscow: Vostochnaya literatura, 1996. 303 p.
  • Ivanova E.V. Tsarskaya kollektsiya v MAE (Indokitaiskii fragment) [Tsar’s Collection at MAE (the Indo-Chinese fragment)]. SPb., 1997. Vol. 6–7. P. 195–215.
  • Ivanova E.V. Taiskii etiket [Thai etiquette] // Etiket u narodov Yugo-Vostochnoi Azii. SPb., 1999. P. 42–108.
  • Ivanova E.V., Shafranovskaya T.K., Taksami Ch.M. Priglashaem v Kunstkameru [Welcome to Kunstkamera]. SPb.: MAE RAS, 2001. 127 p.
  • Ivanova E.V. Odezhda i ukrasheniya narodov Yugo-Vostochnoi Azii. Opyt sravnitel’no-tipologichekogo issledovaniya [Clothing and Ornaments of the Peoples of Southeast Asia. An Essay in Comparative Typology]. SPb.: MAE RAS, 2002. 173 p.
  • Ivanova E.V., Reshetov A.M. Formirovanie i issledovanie fondov MAE po Yugo-Vostochnoi Azii [Origin and study of Southeast Asian collections at MAE] // Kul’tura narodov Okeanii i Yugo-Vostochnoi Azii. SPb., 1995. P. 5–33. (MAE Collection. Vol. XLVI).
  • Kislyakov V.N. Nekotorye soobrazheniya o sud’bakh pervykh evropeiskikh muzeev [Some considerations regarding the destinies of Europe’s first museums] // Kurier Petrovskoi Kunstkamery. SPb., 1997. Vol. 6–7. P. 127–135.
  • Kislyakov V.N. Fotokollektsiya K.I. Webera po Koree v fondakh MAE [K.I. Weber’s photographic collection at MAE] // Kuehnerovskie chteniya 1995–1997: Kratkoe soderzhanie dokladov. SPb., 1998. P. 73–75.
  • Kislyakov V.N. Osnovnoi pechatnyi organ Muzeya antropologii i etnografii (K 100-letiyu so dnya vykhoda pervogo toma “Sbornika MAE” [The main periodical of the Museum of Anthropology and Ethnography: The centenary of the first volume of MAE Collectionsъ // 285 let Peterburgskoi Kunstkamere. SPb., 2000. P. 61–63. (MAE Collection. Vol. XLVIII).
  • Kislyakov V.N. Indoneziiskie kollektsii MAE iz Leidenskogo Muzeya [Indonesian Collections of MAE from Leiden Museum] // Maklaevskie chteniya (1998–2000). Avstraliya, Okeaniya, Yugo-Vostochnaya Aziya: narody, kul’tura, istoriya: Kratkoe soderzhanie dokladov. SPb., 2001. P. 150–156.
  • Kislyakov V.N. Pervye mezhdunarodnye kontakty MAE (indoneziiskie kollektsii iz Berlinskogo etnograficheskogo muzeya) [The First International Contacts of MAE (Indonesian collections from Berlin Ethnographical Museum)] // Maklaevskie chteniya. (1998–2000). Avstraliya, Okeaniya, Yugo-Vostochnaya Aziya: narody, kul’tura, istoriya: Kratkoe soderzhanie dokladov. SPb., 2001. P. 124–126.
  • Kislyakov V.N. Avstraliiskie i okeaniiskie kollektsii Muzeya antropologii i etnografii im. Petra Velikogo v muzeinykh zalakh i otechestvennoi nauchnoi literature [Australian and Oceanian collections of Peter the Great Museum of Anthropology and Ethnography on exhibitions and in Russian scholarship] // Problemy etnografii i istorii kul’tury narodov Aziatskogo-Tikhookeanskogo regiona. SPb., 2004. P. 304–312.
  • Kislyakov V.N. Muzei mira – korrespondenty MAE RAN [World museums as correspondents of MAE] // Radlovskie chteniya – 2004. SPb., 2004. P. 102–106.
  • Petrova E.D. Areal rasprostraneniya peschernykh zhilisch v Tsentral’noi Azii i na Kavkaze [Distribution area of cave dwellings in Central Asia and in the Caucasus] // Lavrovskie (Sredneaziatsko-Kavkazskie) chetinya 2002–2003: Tez. dokladov. SPb., 2003. P. 144–146.
  • Reshetov A.M. Matorin Nikolai Mikhailovich (opyt portreta uchenogo v kontekste vremeni) [Matorin Nikolai Mikhailovich (portrait of a scholar in the context of the time)] // Etnograficheskoe obozrenie. 1994. No. 3. P. 132–155.
  • Reshetov A.M. Repressirovannaya etnografiya: lyudi i sud’by [Repressed ethnography: People and fates] // Kunstkamera. Etnograficheskie tetradi. Vol. 4. SPb., 1994. P. 185–222.
  • Reshetov A.M. Repressirovannaya etnografiya: lyudi i sud’by. Ch. 2 [Repressed ethnography: People and fates. Part 2] // Kunstkamera. Etnograficheskie tetradi. SPb., 1994. Vol. 5–6. P. 342–369.
  • Reshetov A.M. Vassilii Vassilievich Radlov // Kurier Petrovskoi Kunstkamery. SPb., 1995. Vol. 1. P. 75–85.
  • Reshetov A.M. Vassilii Vladimirovich Bartold // Kurier Petrovskoi Kunstkamery. SPb.,1995. Vol. 2–3. P. 37–55.
  • Reshetov A.M. Evfimii Fedorovich Karskii // Kurier Petrovskoi Kunstkamery. SPb., 1996. Vol. 4–5. P. 24–47.
  • Reshetov A.M. Muzei antropologii i etnografii RAN v poslednei chetverti XIX – pervoi chetverti XX veka. Problemy sozdaniya i reorganizatsii [Museum of Anthropology and Ethnography in the last quarter of the 19th and first quarter of the 20th centuries. Issues in origin and reorganization] // Kunstkamera. Vchera. Segodnya. Zavtra. SPb., 1996. Vol. 1. P. 9–44.
  • Reshetov A.M. Schrenk Leopol’d Ivanovich (K 170-letiyu so dnya rozhdeniya) [Schrenk Leopold Ivanovich (on the occasion of his 170th anniversary)ъ // Kurier Petrovskoi Kunstkamery. SPb., 1997. Vol. 6–7. P. 72–88.
  • Reshetov A.M. Istoricheskaya variativnost’ polovozrastnoi struktury i sistemy rodstva [Diachronic variation of sex and age structure and systems of kinship] // Algebra rodstva. Sistemy terminov rodstva. SPb., 1999. Vol. 4. P. 104–122.
  • Reshetov A.M. Zhurnalu rossiiskikh etnografov 75 let (Nekotorye voprosy istorii). Ch. 1. 1926–1930 [The journal of Russian ethnographers has turned 75 (Some issues in history). Part 1. 1926 – 1930] // Etnograficheskoe obozrenie. 2001. No. 4. P. 27–37.
  • Reshetov A.M. K voprosu o sootnoshenii etnicheskoi i konfessional’noi obschnostei [On the relationship between ethnic and confessional communities] // Etnicheskoe edinstvo i spetsifika kul’tury: Materialy Pervykh Sankt-Peterburgskikh etnograficheskikh chtenii / Resp. Ed. A.V. Konovalov. SPb., 2002. P. 16–19.
  • Reshetov A.M. “Biobibliograficheskii slovar’ otechestvennykh etnografov i antropologov. XX vek” – kakim emu byt’? [Bio-Bibliographical Dictionary of Russian Ethnographers and Anthropologists: 20th Century” – what should it be like?] // Etnograficheskoe Obozrenie. 2003. No. 2. P. 151–154.
  • Reshetov A.M. Institut antropologii i etnografii – Institut etnografii AN SSSR. 1933 – 1943 gg. [Institute of Anthropology and Ethnography – Institute of Ethnography AS USSR. 1933 – 1943] // Etnograficheskoe obozrenie. 2003. No. 5. P. 24–42.
  • Reshetov A.M. Tragediya lichnosti: Nikolai Mikhailovich Matorin [Tragedy of personality: Nikolai Mikhailovich Matorin] // Repressirovannye etnografy. M., 2003. Vol. 2. P. 147–192.
  • Reshetov A.M. Khozyaistvenno-kul’turnye tipy i istoriko-etnograficheskie oblasti: formirovanie i perspektivy razvitiya kontseptsii [Economic-cultural types and historical-ethnographic regions: Origin and prospects of a theory] // Rossiiskaya nauka o cheloveke: Vchera, segodnya, zavtra: Materialy mezhdunarodnoi konferentsii. SPb., 2003. Vol. 1. P. 161–168.
  • Sviridov A.A. Istoriya zaseleniya kitaitsami provintsii Fujian (k voprosu o putyakh rasprostraneniye kitaiskogo etnosa) [History of the Chinese colonization of Fujian Province, with reference to Chinese dispersal routes] // Priroda i tsivilizatsiya: Reki i kul’tury: Materialy konferentsii (27–28 sentyabrya 1997). SPb., 1997. P. 49–54.
  • Sviridov A.A. Kollektsiya Zakhara Fedorovicha Leont’evskogo v sobranii MAE RAN [Zakhar Fedorovich Leont’evskii’s collection at MAE] // Kuehnerovskie chteniya 1995–1997: Kratkoe soderzhanie dokladov. SPb., 1998. P. 33–35.
  • Sviridov A.A. Yaponskaya kollektsiya tsesarevicha Nikolaya Aleksandrovicha [Japanese collection of Prince Nicholas Alexandrovich] // 285 let Peterburgskoi Kunstkamere. SPb., 2000. P. 149–154. (MAE Collection. Vol. XLVIII).
  • Sviridov A.A. K istorii sobiraniya yaponskikh muzikal’nykh instrumentov v MAE RAN [On the history of collecting Japanese musical instruments at MAE] // Muzyka Kunstkamery. SPb., 2002. P. 164–166.
  • Sinitsyn A.Yu. Birmanskie kollektsii MAE [Burmese collections of MAE] // Kul’tura narodov Okeanii i Yugo-Vostochnoi Azii. SPb., 1995. P. 42–52. (MAE Collection. Vol. XLVI).
  • Sinitsyn A.Yu. Nekotorye aspekty traditsionnogo birmanskogo etiketa [Certain aspects of traditional Burmese etiquette] // Etiket u narodov Yugo-Vostochnoi Azii. SPb., 1999. P. 13–41.
  • Sinitsyn A.Yu. Oruzhie i boevoe snaryazhenie yaponskikh samuraev: Katalog kollektsii MAE [Weapons and Battle Armor of the Samurai: Catalogue of MAE Collections]. SPb.: MAE RAS, 1999. 159 p.
  • Sinitsyn A.Yu. Vystavka “Mir kokesi: derevyannye kukly Yaponii” v MAE [The Exhibition Kokesi World: Japanese Wooden Dolls at MAE] // Etnograficheskoe obozrenie. 2002. No. 3. P. 136–138.

Expeditions

In the 1970s and 1980s the Soviet-Mongolian expedition for the Study of History and Culture worked in Mongolia. Among its members were A.M. Reshetov and L.L. Viktorova, who collected vast materials including ethnographic collections now owned by MAE.

Over the last years, young department members have availed themselves of opportunities to improve their professional skills in East Asian countries: in 2002-03 E.D. Petrova received language training in China, and in 2004 D.A. Samsonov traveled to the Republic of Korea to collect materials on certain aspects of traditional Korean culture (etiquette rules with regard to public and family life).

Conferences

Since 1977 the Department has been holding annual K50108hner Lectures dedicated to the prominent Russian ethnographer and historian Nikolai Vassilievich K50108hner (1877–1955), who headed the Department for several years. The event is attended by scholars from various institutions of the city. Proceedings are being published on a regular basis:

  • Kuehnerovskie chteniya 1993–1994: Kratkoe soderzhanie dokladov (“K50108hner Lectures 1993 – 1994: Abstracts”) / Ed. by A.M. Reshetov. SPb.: MAE RAS, 1995. 104 p.
  • Kuehnerovskie chteniya 1995–1997: Kratkoe soderzhanie dokladov (“K50108hner Lectures 1995 – 1997: Abstracts”) / Ed. by A.M. Reshetov. SPb.: MAE RAS, 1998. 208 p.
  • Kuehnerovskie chteniya 1998–2000: Kratkoe soderzhanie dokladov (“K50108hner Lectures 1998 – 2000: Abstracts”) / Ed. by A.M. Reshetov. SPb.: MAE RAS, 2001. 239 p.

Current Resaerch Projects

Ongoing and future projects include the inter-departmental project Founders of the Kunstkamera (directed by N.G. Krasnodembskaya). Department of East and Southeast Asia staff members E.V. Ivanova and V.N. Kislyakov are authoring its large sections.

Large catalogues of separate collections are forthcoming: that of Japanese paintings (A.Yu. Sinitsyn), that of Buddhist sculpture (China, Mongolia, and Tibet) (E.V. Ivanova), and that of Japanese illustrations (A.A. Sviridov).

The project of a bio-bibliographical dictionary Russian Ethnographers and Anthropologists: 20th Century” (A.M. Reshetov, V.N. Kislyakov) concerns the history of Russian ethnography.

Collections

The department’s collections originated at the time when the Kunstkamera was founded (18th century). At that time, the museum received artifacts from various regions of foreign Asia, primarily Mongolia and China, as well as from adjoining territories of Siberia.

One of the first independent academic museums to have descended from the Kunstkamera in the early 1800s was the Asian Museum (its successor is St.-Petersburg Branch of the Institute for Oriental Studies). Nearly all collections of Oriental provenance (artifacts, manuscripts, books, etc.) were transferred there.

After the Ethnographic Museum had been established (1836–37), Oriental artifacts were gradually returned to it. The acquisition of East Asian collections continued. Since the transformation of the Ethnographical and Anatomical Museums into the Museum of Anthropology and Ethnography (1879), Asian (primarily Chinese, Japanese and Mongolian) collections have played a key role there and are being constantly replenished.

The influx of Far Eastern materials was the most intense in late 1800s and early 1900s, when MAE was headed by Academician V.V. Radlov. Another fruitful period was that of the 1920s and 1930s. During these periods, most East Asian collections bearing on traditional cultures of that region were acquired.

In the 1950s and early 1960s, thanks to strengthened ties with China, Mongolia, Korea, and Japan, large Far Eastern collections from these countries were brought to MAE by visiting specialists. In later years, the materials were mostly replenished through separate purchases and donations.

The first collections from mainland Southeast Asia were received in the late 1800s. In the last decades of the 20th century and in the early 2000s further increase occurred thanks to manifold relationships with countries of that region (especially Vietnam and Thailand).

At present, East and Southeast Asian ethnographic collections of MAE are among the richest and the most diverse in world museums. A highly important source of information concerning that region is the huge collection of photographs.

Over nearly three centuries, many dozens of collectors, some of whom were prominent representatives of Russian and Western science and culture, have contributed to the growth of the department’s collections. Among them were Orientalists such as Academicians V.V. Bartold, B.Ya. Vladimirtsov, S.F. Oldenburg, as well as A.E. Gluskina, S.E. Malov, G.O. Mohnseeler, A.D. Rudnev, etc., ethnographers such as B.O. Pilsudskii, V.L. Sieroszewsky, S.M. Shirokogorov, diplomats such as K.I. Weber, N.N. Krotkov, L. Lang, V.F. Lub, J.P. Shishmarev, travelers such as F.L. Jelachich, P.K. Kozlov, amateur ethnographers and collectors such as N.V. Kirillov, G.M. Osokin, E.E. Ukhtomskii, Russian officers and sailors such as M.V. Ladyzhenskii, K.N. Pos'et, P.P. Molas, V.V. Lindestrom, etc. Also, the museum received collections from other Russian and foreign museums and other institutions.

At present the Department of East and Southeast Asia owns several dozens of thousands of specimens, nearly 40,000 of which are Chinese, about 9,000 are Japanese, more than 2,000 are Korean, and about as many are Mongolian. Most were collected in the 1800s and early 1900s, and this alone makes them unique or at least valuable in terms of historic and cultural information.

The most precious specimens include the costume of an 18th-century Chinese general, 15th – 18th-century Chinese porcelain, artwork, early medieval Korean celadon dishes excavated in late 1800s, Japanese painting and weapons, Mongolian articles related to the tsam ceremony, Buddhist bronze sculptures from Tibet, China, Mongolia, and Thailand, masks and other attributes of Thai, Chinese, and Japanese traditional dramas, etc. Several published catalogues of the department’s collections are available, as are articles describing their origins:

  • Ainskie kollektsii Muzeya antropologii i etnografii im. Petra Velikogo (Kunstkamera) Rossiiskoi Akademii nauk: Katalog [Ainu Collections of Peter the Great Museum of Anthropology and Ethnography (Kunstkamera) of the Russian Academy of Sciences: Catalogue] / Introduction and texts by Ch.M. Taksami. Tokyo, 1998. 204 p.
  • Kislyakov V.N. Sobirateli kollektsii MAE po traditsionnoi kul’ture narodov Kitaya (dorevolyutsionnyi period) [MAE collectors of the pre-revolutionary era: Chinese Traditional Culture] // Kurier Petrovskoi Kunstkamery. SPb., 1996. Vol. 4–5. P. 57–74.
  • Kislyakov V.N. . Sobirateli kitaiskikh kollektsii MAE RAN (posleoktyabr’skii period) [MAE collectors of the post-revolutionary era: Chinese Traditional Culture] // Kusntkamera vchera, segodnya, zavtra. SPb., 1996. Vol. 1. P. 68–95.
  • Sinitsyn A.Yu. Oruzhie i boevoe snaryazhenie yaponskikh samuraev: Katalog kollektsii MAE [Weapons and Battle Armor of the Samurai: Catalogue of the MAE Collections]. SPb.: MAE RAS. 1999. 159 p.
  • Suslova I.V. Katalog kollektsii po razdelu “Mongoly”. Svodnyi ukazatel’ kollektsii po razdelu “mongoly” [Catalogue of Mongolian Collections. General index] // Koreiskie i mongol’skie kollektsii v sobraniyakh MAE. Leningrad, 1987. P. 163–170. (MAE Collection. Vol. XLI).
  • Suslova I.V. Katalog kollektsii po razdelu “Koreitsy”. Svodnyi ukazatel’ kollektsii po razdelu “Koreitsy” (“Catalogue of Korean Collections. General index”) // Koreiskie i mongol’skie kollektsii v sobraniyakh MAE. Leningrad, 1987. P. 171–175. (MAE Collection. Vol. XLI).
  • Suslova I.V., Ionova Yu.V., Li N.E., Yun G.I. Pamyatniki koreiskoi kul’tury iz sobraniya Muzeya antropologii i etnografii imeni Petra Velikogo (Kunstkamera) Rossii [Monuments of Korean Culture from the Collection of Peter the Great Museum of Anthropology and Ethnography (Kunstkamera) of Russia]. Seoul, 2004. 376 p.
  • Suslova I.V. Katalog kollektsii MAE po narodam materikovoi chasti Yugo-Vostochnoi Azii. Svodnyi ukazatel’ kollektsii po narodam materikovoi chasti Yugo-Vostochnoi Azii. Svodnyi ukazatel’ illyustrirovannykh kollektsii po narodam materikovoi chasti Yugo-Vostochnoi Azii [Catalogue of MAE collections from mainland Southeast Asia. General index including index of illustrations] // Kul’tura narodov Okeanii i Yugo-Vostochnoi Azii. SPb., 1995. P. 226–235. (MAE Collection, Vol. XLVI).

Exhibitions

At present, several permanent exhibitions based on the department’s collections are open at the museum. The largest one features traditional cultures of the peoples inhabiting China (mainly that of the Han). The most impressive exhibits include the costume of an 18th-century military commander (see above), medieval porcelain, lacquer, ivory, ritual paraphernalia, etc.

The Japanese exhibition shows articles related to traditional festivals of boys and girls, porcelain, lacquer, traditional clothing, full attire of a samurai donated to Prince Nicholas Alexandrovich during his trip to the Orient in 1890–91, traditional kitchenware, masks and other attributes of Japanese dramas and ceremonies (No, Kabuki, and Kagura), and ritual articles. A special part of the exhibition focuses on the traditional culture of Hokkaido Ainu.

The Korean exhibition shows traditional clothing, artware, ancient porcelain (celadon), and domestic utensils.

The most attractive elements of the Mongolian exhibition are a model of yurt, ritual objects (tsama masks, clothes of a shamaness), musical instruments, and works of art.

Cultures of mainland Southeast Asia are represented by traditional Vietnamese and Thai clothing, musical instruments, Buddhist sculptures from Thailand, masks of Thai theatre, and domestic objects including ceramics.