What's Happening in Asian Art...

Palace Life Unfolding: A Chinese Lacquer Screen from 1672 by Jan Stuart

April 26, 2022

Spring Morning in the Han Palace (detail), Qing dynasty, Kangxi period, 1672, twelve-panel lacquer screen, Freer Gallery of Art, gift of Charles Lang Freer, F1906.42

Palace Life Unfolding: A Chinese Lacquer Screen from 1672 by Jan Stuart
Burke Center for Japanese Art
Online and in-person lecture, April 28, 6–7:30pm

Jan Stuart, Melvin R. Seiden Curator of Chinese Art, Smithsonian's National Museum of Asian Art will deliver this lecture online and in-person (in 807 Schermerhorn Hall at Columbia University, in-person attendance is limited to Columbia students and faculty only). The program is organized by the Mary Griggs Burke Center for Japanese Art at Columbia University.

Spring Morning in the Han Palace, a large Chinese lacquer screen dated to 1672 in the Freer Gallery of Art, exemplifies the shifting, transcultural identity of some works of art. Rendered in the kuancai technique, in which a design is cut into a lacquer surface and filled with pigments and gold, this type of screen is internationally known as “Coromandel lacquer”—named for an Indian transshipping port via which Chinese screens arrived in Europe. Not only does the name obscure their Chinese identity, they are usually studied from a European perspective. This talk refocuses the lens on the origin, status, and meaning of “Coromandel” screens in China.

Read more, click here.

United Nations Presents The Magic of Zen

April 26, 2022

The Magic of Zen, United Nations
On view now through April 29
South Lobby of the Secretariat Building

In celebration of Chinese Language Day, which takes place annually on April 20th, the Chinese Translation Service in association with the Permanent Mission of the People’s Republic of China to the UN and the UNSRC Chinese Book Club organized an exhibition entitled The Magic of Zen. On display are traditional ink paintings and calligraphy by Wang Fangyu, Wang Dongsheng, Wang Mansheng, Fung Ming Chip, Jin Xufan, Tang Ke, Hai Tao, Tai Xiangzhou, and Cai Dong. These works illustrate Zen aesthetics such as mystique, tranquility, depth, elegance, and simplicity while reflecting the Chinese painting ideology of “drawing artistic inspiration from both within and without.” Five of these artists are represented by AWNY member Fu Qiumeng Fine Art.

Language Days at the United Nations seek to celebrate multilingualism and cultural diversity, as well as to promote equal use of all six official languages throughout the organization. Chinese was established as an official language of the UN in 1946 and became a recognized working language in 1973. Chinese Language Day is held each year on April 20th, which is called guyu ("rain of millet") in the traditional Chinese calendar and pays tribute to the historian Cangjie (circa 2667 BCE–2596 BCE), who is credited with inventing Chinese characters. Legend has it that he had four eyes and that when he created characters, the deities and ghosts cried and the sky rained millet.

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Ralph M. Chait Galleries at The Philadelphia Show

April 26, 2022

Chinese Powder Blue Porcelain Teapot, Kangxi period (1662-1722), 4 1/2 in.

The Philadelphia Show, Ralph M. Chait Galleries
April 29-May 1
Preview Party April 28
The Philadelphia Show is known for exceptional quality and integrity, and this year, for the first time, will be held at the Philadelphia Museum of Art. Over forty of our nation's most outstanding antique dealers and fine art galleries exhibit the best selections in antiques. fine art, Americana, period furniture, folk art, ceramics, porcelain, silver, jewelry, textiles and decorative arts.

Read more, click here

Member Monday - DAG with Josheen Oberoi

April 25, 2022

Madhvi Parekh, Sea God, 1971, oil on canvas, 48.0 x 72.2 in.

With the confluence of Asia Week New York and Women’s History Month, Josheen Oberoi, Vice President and Director of DAG’s New York branch, was inspired to suggest to the DAG global team the idea to assemble an exhibition of works by Indian women artists. The result, curated and led by Kishore Singh, Senior Vice President and Head of Exhibitions and Publications, is the exhibition A Place in the Sun: Women Artists from 20th Century India, on view at DAG’s NY gallery in the Fuller Building until May 28th. While this plan met the immediate goal of presenting a multifaceted and engaging exhibition of works by several accomplished Indian modern artists, many of which have now been sold, it also supported Oberoi’s goal to expand awareness, especially in the United States, of the work of this overlooked cohort.

Josheen Oberoi is a gallerist and curator based in New York. Prior to joining DAG, an international gallery that specializes in South Asian modern art, Oberoi worked as Director at Tyler Rollins Fine Art, with a focus on contemporary Southeast Asian art; Saffronart, as a Specialist in South Asian Art; and Bodhi Art as a gallerist and Associate Curator. She also worked for Miditech, where she helped produce documentary series on Indian art and architecture and other projects for the BBC. She has an MA in medieval Indian history from Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi and an MA in South Asian art history from Florida State University.

Zarina Hashmi, Untitled, serigraph on paper, 1971

Despite the recognition of a few women artists, both through exhibitions such as those devoted to Zarina Hashmi and Mrinalini Mukherjee, and the inclusion of Arpita Singh in Asia Society’s Triennial in 2020, and through auctions where works by artists such as Amrita Sher-gil have recently sold for approximately US$5million, viewers in the U.S. have little chance to see or learn about artists such as those included in DAG’s current show. A Place in the Sun focuses on artists who lived and worked primarily in the mid to late 20th century, who have often been overlooked, as they fall between the artists who emerged before them at the beginning of the modern period and those that came after them as part of the contemporary art expansion. Some better known artists, including Zarina, whose name people recognize, are included alongside lesser known ones, such as Anupam Sud and Madhvi Parekh, that expands the audience’s knowledge of the field. By deliberately limiting the number of artists represented to ten, and by including several works by each, the exhibition is better able to demonstrate each artist’s breadth.

Oberoi feels strongly that education and presenting information in a variety of forms are key in the long term. Therefore, this exhibition is accompanied by and related to several informative productions. A Place in the Sun has an extensive online catalogue, available here. Similarly, DAG has produced a monograph on the artist Gogi Saroj Pal. Oberoi also presented an overview of the exhibition to the Foreign Press Association in a recorded conversation with Sarab Zavaleta. An example of the challenging thoughts that were discussed was to consider how unusual in world art history it is for a male model to be presented as Anupam Sud did in Couch Potato (to watch the recording, click here.)

L-R: DAG’s publication on the work of Gogi Saroj Pal; Josheen Oberoi presenting DAG New York’s current exhibition for the Foreign Press Association in March.

In future, Oberoi and the DAG team are planning more exhibitions of great art, varied and informative programs, and personal outreach to “make information and resources available” and thereby “create access” for more people to discover and enjoy the inspired and inspiring work of India’s modern women artists. In the near term, for example, Oberoi is planning a walkthrough with a NY curator and a talk by an academic that investigates the interface between women in cinema and art in the early and mid 20th century. (Stay tuned here and to DAG's website for more details.)

Anupam Sud, Couch Potato, etching and aquatint on paper, 2007

Lecture on Japanese Armor at JASA

April 25, 2022

Samurai Splendor: Sword Fittings from Edo Japan
Japanese Art Society of America

Zoom lecture, Thursday, April 28, 5pm

This lecture by Markus Sesko, Associate Curator of Asian Arms and Armor at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, accompanies the current exhibition at the Met with the same name. The focus is on sword furniture of the Edo period, a time of economic growth, prolonged peace, and widespread enjoyment of the arts and culture, yet with strict class separation and rigid regulations for all. As a result, the ruling class, the samurai, had only a few ways to express personal taste. The furniture of their swords, which were an indispensable symbol of their power and authority, became one of the most important means of self-expression and a focal point of artistic creation.

This exhibition and lecture explore the luxurious aspect of sword fashion from Edo period Japan, a fascinating area of Japanese arms and armor rarely featured in exhibitions outside of Japan. It presents a selection of exquisite sword mountings, fittings, and related objects, including sword-fittings maker’s sketchbooks, all drawn from The Met’s collection, many of which have rarely or never been exhibited.

Note: Advance registration is required for this event. Read more and to register, click here

Visit Songtsam's Benzilan Lodge

April 24, 2022

Songtsam's Benzilan Lodge
As the lowest altitude lodge, Songtsam Lodge Benzilan, located at the junction of Yunnan and Sichuan, is a unique dry-hot valley in the Shangri-la region. Nestled in an intimate green valley by the Yangtze River, it offers a small stone building wrapped in green plants, together with authentic white-walled Tibetan homes. From the colorful windows of the lodge, you have a view of a small prayer house that rests atop a hill.

Songtsam Lodge Benzilan, which consists of 10 deluxe rooms, is situated at an altitude of 1900 meters, and is located in a Tibetan village in the valley of the Jinsha River’s tributary on the southwest side of Benzilan town, where Deqin county meets Batang (Sichuan province) and Shangri-la.

Benzilan stands on a narrow strip of land on the right bank of the Upper Yangtze River, tucked between the water and the sharply rising hills. As the altitude falls by more than 1,000m, the temperature rises, and travellers now arrive at another Shangri-La rich in blooming flowers and flourishing trees. Some of the region’s most delicious fruit is grown here, including juicy grapes and watermelons during the summer, and mouth-watering tangerine in the autumn.

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The Architectonics of Form: Scrolls by Ganesh Haloi

April 24, 2022

Ganesh Haloi, Untitled 23, 2021, gouache and Chinese ink stick on Japanese scroll paper,
27.5 x 53.5 in.

The Architectonics of Form: Scrolls by Ganesh Haloi, Akar Prakar
April 23-July 16, 2022
On view at Akar Prakar, Kolkata and online

Sound encompasses both time and space, weaving the two into complex structures of material manifestation that we experience and express as forms through our sensorial perceptions (smell, taste, see, feel and hear). The scrolls by Ganesh Haloi, are cartographic mappings of the layered sensations that have impressed upon him for decades. Beginning with the steady lyricism of Ajanta murals, resonant whispers of the varying landscapes, rhythmicity of the alpana forms, structurality of manmade interventions and the poetics of space.

Ganesh Haloi, Scroll 7, 2021, Chinese ink stick on Japanese scroll paper, 53.75 x 13.75 inches

Ganesh Haloi was born in 1936 in Jamalpur, Mymensingh(in present-day Bangladesh). He moved to Calcutta in 1950 following the partition. The trauma of displacement left its mark on his work as it did on some other painters of his generation. Since then his art has exhibited an innate lyricism coupled with a sense of nostalgia for a lost world. In 1956, he graduated from the Government College of Art and Craft, Calcutta. In the next year he was appointed by the Archaeological Survey of India to make copies of Ajanta murals. Seven years later, Haloi returned to Calcutta. From 1963 until his retirement, he taught at the Government College of Art and Craft. He is a member of The Society of Contemporary Artists, Calcutta since 1971, and lives and works in Calcutta.

He has participated in several group exhibitions in India, Greece/Germany (Documenta 14 at Athens & Kassel), California (Architecture of Life, at Berkeley Art Museum & Pacific Film Archives (BAM/PFA), Berkeley), Berlin (8th Berlin Biennale for Contemporary Art), London (A Special Arrow Was Shot in the Neck, David Roberts Art Foundation). He is represented by Akar Prakar Kolkata and New Delhi, and has had various solo exhibitions in Kolkata, Delhi, Mumbai, Dhaka and New York including Sense & Sensation at Akar Prakar Kolkata and New Delhi in 2021, Form & Play at Asia Week New York in 2020 to name a few.

To view the exhibition, click here

Last Weekend for the Met's Japan: A History of Style

April 22, 2022

Sakai Hōitsu (1761–1828), Cherry and Maple Trees, early 1820s, pair of six-panel folding screens; ink, color, and gold leaf on paper, purchase, Mary and James G. Wallach Foundation Gift, Rogers and Mary Livingston Griggs and Mary Griggs Burke Foundation Funds, and Brooke Russell Astor Bequest, 2018

Japan: A History of Style, The Metropolitan Museum of Art
Last day Sunday, April 24

This exhibition celebrates how gifts and acquisitions of the last decade have transformed The Met’s ability to narrate the story of Japanese art by expanding and deepening the range of works that can elucidate the past. Each of the ten rooms that make up the Arts of Japan Galleries features a distinct genre, school, or style, representing an array of works in nearly every medium, from ancient times to the present. Highlights include the debut of a spectacular group of contemporary metalwork by Living National Treasures and emerging artists.

Read more, click here

It's Like Breathing- Mio Yamamoto at Asia Society

April 22, 2022

It's Like Breathing- Mio Yamamoto, Asia Society Japan
Online and in-person program
April 25, 8-9:15am Tokyo time/April 24, 7-8:15pm EDT

This month's Art for Breakfast program features Mio Yamato, who will have just returned from Mexico where she had her first artist in residence experience. It’s only been seven years since she graduated from Kyoto University of Art and Design, but her works have been exhibited in Japan, London and Hong Kong. Most recognized is the RED DOT series that emerged from her graduation project. In this series, she starts with a dot on a white canvas without any specific image in mind. But, with that single dot, the empty space becomes meaningful. Using different mediums, her array of works have developed to large installations. Ms. Yamato will introduce her works and talk about her creative processes. She will also discuss the impact of the pandemic which led to creating a new series. And now with her experience in Mexico, we look forward to what lies ahead of her future works.

Read more and register, click here

Thomas Murray Lectures on Indonesian Textiles

April 21, 2022

Abung people (Lampung interior), Woman's Ceremonial Skirt, tapis (detail), late 17th-19th century, cotton, silk, metallic-wrapped threads, mirror, embroidery, warp ikat, applique

Archetypes, Aesthetics and Agency: Adat Textiles of Early Indonesian Cultures, Thomas Murray
This program will be presented twice to accommodate different time zones:
#1: Friday evening, April 22, 7pm PDT/10pm EDT/Saturday, April 23, 9am Jakarta & Bangkok
#2: Saturday, April 23, 10am PDT/1pm EDT/5pm GMT
Thomas Murray will participate live in each session for the Q&A.

Sponsored by the Textile Museum Associates of Southern California, this lecture will follow the themes presented in the newly published book, Textiles of Indonesia, and will focus on some of the finest cloths to come out of the archipelago, presenting each object with impeccable photographs. Geographically arranged, this lecture pays particular attention to textiles from the Batak and the Lampung region of Sumatra, the Dayak of Borneo, and the Toraja of Sulawesi, as well as rare textiles from Sumba, Timor and other islands.

To register for talk #1, click here

To register for talk #2, click here

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