11 October 2006 - 27 April 2007
The inspiration for this exhibition is one of the Powerhouse Museum’s most mysterious objects: a small figure of the Chinese God of Longevity unearthed in Darwin in 1879. The Museum acquired a plaster cast of the object in 1889 and the original in 1950. From the time of its discovery, the figure has been the subject of much speculative and scholarly enquiry. Many writers and historians have suggested that the God of Longevity may be evidence of the arrival of a Chinese vessel from the voyages of Zheng He (1371-1432) in the early 15th century, more than 350 years before James Cook landed at Kurnell.