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Forbidden Gardens, in Katy, Texas, is a fascinating outdoor museum replicating some of China's major historic scenes. Guided tours take you back to the third century BC to view the first Emperor's amazing 8,000 piece terra-cotta army replicated in 1/3 scale. The tour continues to the intricately detailed miniatures of the famous Forbidden City in Beijing which served as palaces for nearly 500 years of Imperial rule in 1/20 scale.

These life sized terra cotta figures are all different in some way(all 8000!). They were designed after his own personal guards. The figures are hollow and were setup where he was to be buried so that when the warriors died their spirits would inhabit the figures to protect the emperor in his afterlife.

I wish I could describe in words how impressive this is here, but I'll let the photo do the talking for me.

This project was funded by a Hong Kong business man for $40mm with a 20 year plan(this is year 10). His kids were going to school in the US and he felt they were loosing touch with their heritage.

(constructive critique is welcome)
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Comments on this photo:

Jan 18 2007 20:05 GMT hallo
Great...did you give up on the guesswhat :))))
Jan 18 2007 20:07 GMT LizSA
I love it...it really is beautiful....what a fantastic story behind it..!!!
Jan 18 2007 20:09 GMT PhotoPro PRO
hallo - trying to multitask.... I'll take a quick look now
Jan 18 2007 21:25 GMT genese
beautiful image and great information! ill add that to places i must go!
my only critique would be that the eye gets drawn to the top left corner a bit... but unless you clone that bit out theres not alot you can do!...sometimes the story is more important as a photographic friend told me.... in documentrys you can't always produce the so called "perfect image, this is better than his ;) i wont tell him though lol
Jan 18 2007 22:37 GMT ThorBeverley PRO
Fascinating! I would love to see the warriors in China - I have seen one or two examples in various museums but the sheer immensity of the Army is apparently truly amazing.
I share genese's view that the setting of the warriors is a bit distracting (the museums fault not yours) so anything to reduce this (different angle?) would perhaps help.
Jan 18 2007 22:45 GMT Roadiepig PRO
I think I read about the original temple in National Geographic a few years back- very impressive that the businessman thought it important that his children not loose their heritage while studying so much that he would finance such a major project!

Nice series all around....
Jan 18 2007 23:31 GMT PhotoPro PRO
thsnk you genese!
Jan 18 2007 23:33 GMT PhotoPro PRO
thank you ThorBeverley!
I think I would completely recompose this by shooting from higher up to eliminate the extra parts...... if only I'd had a ladder with me! :)
Jan 19 2007 07:02 GMT Arnor
I'm in San Antonio and the last time we went to Houston we stopped by in Katy to take a look. Awsome place and you got some good photos too:)
Jan 19 2007 07:27 GMT GRAMPIE PRO
Excellent series. Great images and information.
Feb 18 2007 19:43 GMT haftlis
Schönes serie