Terracotta warriors coming to Sydney

The Sydney International Art Series will bring major exhibitions from around the world to Sydney, NSW Premier Kristina Keneally announced on Thursday.

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The terracotta warriors will be exhibited at the Art Gallery of NSW later this year.

Ten of the life-size warriors and horses, buried more than 2000 years ago with China’s first emperor Qin Shihuang, will be on display from December to March.

Concurrently, an exhibition of the work of photographer Annie Liebowitz, with almost 200 images of famous public figures, family and friends, will be shown at the Museum of Contemporary Art.

“Either of these shows, in their own light, would be cultural attractions,” Ms Keneally told reporters.

“But bringing them together as we are, under the Events NSW partnership, (will) attract more than 300,000 visitors to our beautiful city and bring as much as $20 million a year for NSW.”

A small collection of the terracotta warriors was exhibited in Sydney in 1983.

Ms Keneally said this larger exhibition would allow Sydneysiders to better appreciate the beauty of the warriors up close.

She also announced the series would bring 200 Picasso works to Sydney in 2011.

This will be the largest Picasso exhibition ever to come to Australia, Art Gallery of NSW director Edmund Capon told reporters.

“If the art of 20th century is going to be defined by a single individual, it is absolutely bound to be Picasso,” Mr Capon said on Thursday.

“This (exhibition) will cover every aspect of his career.

“It will probably be the biggest show we’ve done here.”

He added that a Francis Bacon exhibition would follow in 2012.