The Center's logo since its inception has been the bronze jue. The jue was a sacred bronze ceremonial implement employed by the kings of the Shang Dynasty during the dynasty's last phase (ca. 1300-1050 BC). It was presumably used as a kind of a beaker for dispensing an alcoholic beverage being offered along with a kind of ceremonial stew in various bronze pots as a kind of sacred meal being offered to royal ancestors perceived as gods.
We do not, however, know the details of the ceremonials involved. The solid legs presumably allowed the jue's placement atop a small fire to warm the liquor within. The vertical, stem-like protrusions may have been placed where they are to be grasped by one or more tongs to move the vessel on and off the fire. This, however, is all speculation.
The ceremonials of Shang seem to have been lost some time during the millennium after its fall, though they supposedly were preserved for the first seven hundred years of that period in the fief of Sung (located just west of the Shantung Peninsula in northeastern China), which was given to a surviving member of the Shang royal house to maintain the sacrifices to its ancestors.
Even the jue's name, like the names of most of the Shang ceremonial bronzes, was lost during antiquity, and had to be coined anew by the armchair archaeologists and antiquarians of the Sung Dynasty (960-1276 AD, not to be confused with the fief of Sung of late antiquity referred to above, near whose territory was born the founder of the much later Sung Dynasty).
This aura of incomplete knowledge that surrounds this most unique of Chinese bronzes makes it an appropriate icon for a group of scholars who recognize that their knowledge is and must remain incomplete, though they are committed to diligently strive to extend it.