Ancient Chinese 'Warriors' return to Bogota

Terracotta Warrior models on exhibit in Bogota, Colombia, look so genuine that many visitors take them as the real ones in China.

Gustavo Marquez, a 58-year-old Colombian lawyer, was one of the visitors puzzled by the Terracotta Warriors replicas, which are creations by the Chinese sculptor Xia Nan.

Marquez, along with his wife and daughters, toured the exhibition - the Lanterns of the Terracotta Warriors - when it opened on March 13.

The show, part of the 15th Iberoamerican Theater Festival, is scheduled to close on March 27 in the Colombian capital.

This is the second time in 10 years that the ancient Chinese Warriors set foot in Colombia.

In 2006, six real Terracotta Warrior statues from the ancient tomb-turned museum near the northwestern Chinese city of Xi'an were exhibited in Bogota's National Museum, attracting roughly 220,000 visits.

Marquez, who had visited the 2006 exhibition, said he thought the captivating exhibits were the real Terracotta Warriors before he realized they were replicas made with wire and cloth.

A big distinction is that each of the replicas contains electric devices which flash in red, yellow, blue, green and white when turned on.

Fascinated by the lanterns, Marquez said, "We appreciate the culture of this Asian country and hope to see more such cultural exchanges between Latin America and China."

Discovered in 1974 and dating back to the Qin Dynasty of over 2,000 years ago, the archaeological complex home to the Terracotta Warriors is a UNESCO world heritage site.

The site houses 8,000 life-size warrior statues left by China's first emperor Qin Shi Huang who reigned in the 3rd century BC.

The Terracotta Warrior lanterns, created to mark the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing, have been touring the world since 2012. They have been to Britain, Finland, Estonia, Australia, the Czech Republic and Croatia.

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