What's Happening in Asian Art...

Asian, Ancient, and Ethnographic Works of Art Auction at iGavel

April 19, 2022

Two Tibetan Painted Paper and Silk Sutra Covers, Qing dynasty, fabric, silk embroidered, each cover:
23 x 6 1/2 in., Estimate: $20,000-30,000

Asian, Ancient, and Ethnographic Works of Art Parts I and II

Now online-April 26 and 27

This two-part online auction offers a treasure trove of works of art from China, Japan, Korea, and the Himalayas. The sales include ceramics of many periods and styles, paintings and woodblock prints of various themes and traditions, jades, textiles, furniture, and a rich array of Buddhist sculptures, among many other things. Bidding is available now and will conclude on April 26 for Part I and April 27 for Part II.

Read more, click here

Dai Ichi Arts opens new exhibition Chanoyu: A Taste of Tea

April 19, 2022

Chanoyu: A Taste of Tea, Dai Ichi Arts, Ltd
On view now-May 30, 2022

Dai Ichi Gallery is delighted to present a group of teawares this Spring, functional wares representing the art of Chanoyu, the ritual Japanese tea ceremony that involves serving, taking, and drinking of tea. The modern history of Chanoyu carries through the style and grace of tea tradition. Vases, teabowls, water jars, and other functional objects act as aesthetic anchors for the ceremony.

This Spring, Dai Ichi Arts showcases the modern traditions of teaware: a taste of tea. The exhibition focuses on functional pieces, featuring tea bowls, vases, water jars, and functional works by artists: Kato Mami 加藤真美 (born 1963), Goto Hideki 後藤秀樹 (born 1973), Shingu Sayaka 新宮さやか (born 1979), Murata Gen 村田元 (1904-1988), Shimaoka Tatsuzo 島岡達三 (LNT, 1919-2007), Kinjo Jiro 金城次郎 (LNT, 1912-2004), Sugimoto Sadamitsu 杉本貞光 (born 1935), Nakamura Takuo 中村卓夫 (born 1945), and many more.

Read more, click here

Member Monday - Thomas Murray

April 18, 2022

Dark blue-ground festival kimono decorated with sea creatures, first half 20th century, cloth: cotton; tsutsugaki, (freehand resist), The John R. Van Derlip Fund and the Mary Griggs Burke Endowment Fund established by the Mary Livingston Griggs and Mary Griggs Burke Foundation

Thomas Murray is an independent researcher, collector, lecturer, author, and private dealer of Asian and Tribal art with an emphasis on Indonesian sculpture and textiles, as well as animistic art from other varied cultures. Murray lent his expertise to the State Department during the Obama Administration as a member of the president’s Cultural Property Advisory Committee. However, recently it is Murray’s collection of Japanese textiles that have received particular attention.

L-R:Cover of Murray’s 2109 publication Textiles of Japan and Thomas Murray

In early 2019 Murray published Textiles of Japan, a hefty volume that surveys the daily dress, work-wear, and festival garb and follows the Arts and Crafts philosophy of the Mingei Movement, which saw that modernization would leave behind traditional art forms such as the hand-made textiles used by country people, farmers, and fisherman. It presents subtly patterned cotton fabrics, often indigo dyed from the main islands of Honshu and Kyushu, along with garments of the more remote islands: the graphic bark cloth, nettle fiber, and fish skin robes of the aboriginal Ainu in Hokkaido and Sakhalin to the north, and the brilliantly colored cotton kimonos of Okinawa to the far south.  Virginia Soenksen, associate director of the Madison Art Collection and James Madison University, and Anna Jackson, keeper of the Asian Department at the V&A, joined as co-authors. Presently, Amazon charts a 4.8 out of 5-star rating for this book. Mindful of how little is known of the textile artists of the past and how the usefulness of their creations meant that many did not survive, Thomas wrote in his book, "First and foremost, this book is dedicated to the anonymous ancestors whose woven artwork we celebrate and to the astonishing artistry of their craft, that their vision may never be forgotten... And to those who preserved these textiles through the generations we owe a great debt, for it is due to their efforts that we enjoy these textiles today, not just as a Japanese cultural expression but as universal cultural heritage."

In March 2019 the Minneapolis Institute of Art announced that they acquired 230 Japanese textiles and objects from Murray’s collection, including the exuberant and one-of-a-kind kimono above, which was hand-drawn and painted with a rice paste resist dye technique and worn to celebrate a bounteous haul of fish. This acquisition, which was part-purchase/part-gift, will be exhibited as Dressed by Nature: Textiles of Japan from June 25-September 11, 2022 and Murray will give a lecture about his experiences as a collector as part of the opening festivities (the specifics will be provided on this website).

Ainu People, Hokkaido, Japan, or Sakhalin, Siberia, Attush Robe, 18th century

In addition to launching a redesigned and engaging new website to feature his gallery’s two online exhibitions, Important Indian, Indonesian and Other Textiles and Masks: Inspiration and Interpretation, Murray also brought a select sample of textiles to New York for this season’s Asia Week. Among his several sales, the striking Attush Robe, shown above, was purchased by the Minneapolis Institute of Art to add to their collection.

Read more, click here

On the subject of Indonesian textiles, about which he published another large catalogue, Thomas Murray will speak in an online lecture this weekend. More details coming soon or read more now, click here

Artist's Talk at Korea Society

April 17, 2022

Artist Talk: Wonju Seo, Video Release, Korea Society
Wednesday, April 20, 5pm EDT

In Wonju Seo’s hands, the aesthetics, forms, and techniques of bojagi—traditional Korean wrapping cloths—are reconfigured as abstract textile art for a global audience. Seo combines needlework, painting, photography, and other techniques to create contemplative artworks that explore her transcultural identity and life experience. In this online program, she talks about her career and work.

Wonju Seo's work is currently in the exhibition Travelogue at Korea Society. Born and raised in Seoul and now based in the United States, Wonju Seo is an artist and educator who has won numerous awards and exhibited her art in exhibitions throughout the world. Her works are in several permanent institutions in the U.S. and South Korea.

Read more and register, click here

ARTIC Opens Second Rotation of The Golden Age of
Kabuki Prints

April 16, 2022

Katsukawa Shunkо (1743-1812), Actor Onoe Matsusuke I as Retired Emperor Sutoku, ca. 1775-1785,
color woodblock print, Clarence Buckingham Collection, 1925.2370

The Golden Age of Kabuki Prints, Art Institute of Chicago
Second rotation: April 16-June 26, 2022

The drama of Kabuki theater was most successfully conveyed in the prints of the Katsukawa School of artists because they captured the individual characteristics of each actor. This exhibition is drawn from the more than 700 Katsukawa School prints in the Art Institute’s collection. Along with the dramatic subject matter, Kabuki theater is characterized by its highly stylized postures, movements, hand gestures, facial expressions, even makeup. All these elements are exaggerated to heighten narrative impact.

Read more, click here

Diana Chou Joins PEM as Consulting Curator

April 15, 2022

Diana Chou has recently joined the Peabody Essex Museum as Consulting Curator.

Diana Y. Chou joined the Peabody Essex Museum earlier this year to serve as the Consulting Curator for Yin Yu Tang. In her role, she is spearheading the development of a new gallery for the 200-year-old house which was built in China and re-erected on PEM’s campus in 2003. Chou is also working with PEM education and civic engagement staff to develop a robust series of public programs related to the house.

Chou previously worked at the San Diego Museum of Art, where she reinstalled multiple galleries for Asian and Islamic Art and curated several special exhibitions on Japanese and Indian art. Chou also held curatorial roles at the San Diego Chinese Historical Museum, the Dayton Art Institute, and National Museum of History in Taipei. She previously taught various subjects of Chinese and Asian Art History at the University of California, San Diego; Cleveland State University and John Carroll University.

Chou holds a Ph.D. in Chinese Art History from the University of Kansas. She was a two-time recipient of a National Endowment for the Humanities, Summer Institutes Fellowship (Hawaii and India), and was awarded a Museum Network Fellowship from National Museum of Korea and National Central Library, Seoul, South Korea. Her publications primarily focus on collecting tastes and reinterpretations of flowers and animals in East Asian Art. In recent years, Chou has expanded her research interests to include artistic exchanges and adaptations between regions and civilizations, such as the Silk Road, and the transmission of mythical creatures in Asian architecture and design.

Interior courtyard of Yin Yu Tang at PEM.

“Yin Yu Tang” is the name of a house built 200 years ago in the small village of Huang Cun in southeastern China in Anhui province. The owner, a prosperous merchant, was a member of the locally prominent Huang family. The five-bay, two-story residence with 16 bedrooms was typical of its region, built of timber-frame construction, with a tile roof and exterior masonry walls of sandstone and brick. Unused since the 1980s, the house was disassembled and moved to Salem, Massachusetts, where it was rebuilt and installed at PEM as a permanent installation, which opened in 2003. Available for visits, Yin Yu Tang is the only example of historic Chinese vernacular architecture in North America.

To read more about and take a virtual tour of Yin Yu Tang, click here

AWNY's Weekend Online Flower Show

April 15, 2022

Kunisada (1786-1865), Mitsuuji Viewing Cherry Blossoms in the Yoshiwara Genji-e (detail), 1847-52, woodblock print, courtesy of Art of Japan

At last, spring blossoms are here in New York, and much of the rest of the Northern Hemisphere as well. In addition to enjoying real flowers outside, join us this weekend on AWNY's social media sites for a show of Asian works of art that celebrate the spring season. And on Sunday, we will include...bunny rabbits!

To find AWNY on Facebook, click here

And on Instagram, click here

And on Twitter, click here

To learn more about the art works in Saturday's Blossoms post:
•Kunisada (1786-1865), Mitsuuji Viewing Cherry Blossoms in the Yoshiwara
(detail), The Art of Japan
•Zhao Mengjian (1199–before 1267), Narcissus, The Metropolitan Museum of Art
•Ohara Kōson(1877-1945), Basket with Arranged Flowers, Egenolf Gallery
•Dish with Cherry Blossom and Cloud Design, Hizen Ware, Nabeshima Type, Sebastian Izzard Asian Art
•Huang Shen(1687-ca. 1768/70), Old Man Gazing at Branch of Magnolia in a Vase, National Museum of Asian Art, Smithsonian Institution
•Qi Baishi (1863-1957), Wisteria, Christie's
•Polychrome Enamel(Ko-aka-e) Scholar-theme Porcelain Dish, Late Ming dynasty, Kaikodo
•Hanaoka Manshū, Pine and Cherries by Shrine, 1938, Thomsen Gallery

To learn more about Sunday's fluffle of bunnies post:
•Gyokuzan Asahi (1843–1923), Lunar Rabbit Pounding Rice, Yale University Art Gallery
•Unidentified artist (Qing dynasty), Three Rabbits, Metropolitan Museum of Art
•Bronze Figure of a Hare Seated on its Haunches, Tang dynasty, National Museum of Asian Art, Smithsonian Institution
•Helmet in the Shape of A Crouching Rabbit, 17th century, Metropolitan Museum of Art
•Panel with Rabbits amid Clouds, late 16th-early 17the century, Metropolitan Museum of Art
•Yabu Chosui (1814-ca. 1870), Portrait of a Rabbit, Art Institute of Chicago
•Crouching Rabbit, green nephrite, Yale University Art Gallery
•Rabbit Shoes, China 20th century, Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art

Last Days for Tibet House Exhibition

April 14, 2022

Gilt Buddha Sakyamuni, 14th century, 10 in.

Roof of the World: Gems of the Guardianship Collection at the Tibet House Gallery
Tibet House US

Last day April 17

This live exhibition features a selection of tangkas, sculptures, and ritual items, including new donations. A part of the THUS mandate is to collect diverse examples of Tibetan sacred, fine, and folk arts, with the hope to ultimately repatriate them to a National Museum in a culturally free Tibet. To this end, the Repatriation Collection was started in 1992. This growing collection is comprised of over 1,000 items: tangkas, bronzes, ritual objects, and folk art. Generous collectors who are deeply concerned about the ultimate disposition of the cultural heritage of the Tibetan people have and continue to thoughtfully give representative examples of the vast and sophisticated repertoire of Tibetan arts.

Also now on view at Tibet house is David Orr: Radiance + Reflection,which integrates two primary bodies of work which evoke interconnection and impermanence: Mandala Lunae, photographs of the moon, repeated and arranged in geometric patterns via digital reflection, and ILLUMINED, a series wherein photographs of sacred manuscripts, texts, and sūtras — from myriad traditions — have been reconfigured into purely visual forms.

Read more, click here

Last Days for Gallery Exhibitions

April 13, 2022

Jayashree Chakravarty, Pulsating, 2020-2021, acrylic, oil, audiotape, plant bark, paper and synthetic adhesive on canvas

Be sure to see these three gallery exhibitions before they close soon.

Jayashree Chakravarty: Feeling the Pulse (in the pandemic)
Akar Prakar

ONLINE exhibition - closes April 15th
Seeking parallels between human and nature forms, Jayashree Chakravarty (born 1956) is drawn to the power of the delicate but resilient network of veins/lines that form a sieve to hold the structure of matter together.

Read more, click here

Ken Matsubara, Chaos, 2021, 12-panel screen, natural pigments and minerals on washi paper, sold to the Minneapolis Institute of Art

Chaos to Cosmos: White Road between Two Rivers
Ippodo Gallery

Closes April 14th
This retrospective of Ken Matsubara’s (born 1948) works presents a view of the universe that is magnificent beyond description.

Read more, click here

Bertha Lum (1869-1954), Bamboo Road, woodblock print, ca. 1912

Influencers: Japonisme and Modern Japan Scholten Japanese Art
Closes April 15th
This exhibitions features fine prints and paintings that demonstrate the dialogue between Japan and the West.

Read more, click here

Trending! - Korean Hanbok

April 12, 2022

Fashion design by Kim Young-Jin, photo by Kim Jung-han, The New York Times, October 19, 2020

As reported this weekend in The New York Times, Korea's traditional clothing style, the hanbok, is currently influencing popular fashion designers and au courant celebrities and performers. Hanbok are trending!

Recently, Korea Society hosted informative online lectures that trace the history of hanbok, explain its multiple components and manner of wearing, and describe its contemporary impact and variations. The two talks were presented by Dr. Minjee Kim, the preeminent scholar of Korean textile and fashion in the U.S., and focused on men's and women's wear. Recordings of these programs are available on Korea Society's website, click here for the women's hanbok program and click here for the men's hanbok program.

Last year Asia Society Korea also offered a multi-part illustrated essay on the history of traditional hanbok that is available to read. For Hanbok Park 1: Origin and History, click here and for Hanbok Part 2: Hanbok in Modern Days, click here.

For The New York Times article One Garment's Journey Through History by Aileen Kwun on April 9, 2022, click here.

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