What's Happening in Asian Art...

Asia Week New York 2023 Announces Stellar Line-up of International Gallery Exhibitions, Auctions, and
Museum Shows

December 16, 2022

The Asia Week New York Association is pleased to announce that 26 international galleries and six auction houses—Bonhams, Christie’s, Doyle, Heritage Auctions, iGavel, and Sotheby’s —will participate in the 2023 edition of Asia Week New York. Now in its 14th year of celebrating Asian art and culture, the exhibitions and auctions—both in-person and online—commence March 16th through March 24th.

“We’re delighted to announce our distinguished roster of dealers and auction houses and look forward to their exciting and diverse array of Asian art treasures,” says Dessa Goddard, chairman of Asia Week New York.

This year, Asia Week New York welcomes the Japan-based gallery Shibunkaku, which makes its debut with a joint exhibition at Joan B Mirviss LTD. Also returning to the fold are Buddhist Art from Germany and Runjeet Singh from England.

As always, the Asia Week New York galleries and auction houses will present a spectacular array of treasures featuring the rarest and finest examples of Asian porcelain, jewelry, textiles, paintings, ceramics, sculpture, bronzes, and prints from across Asia, dating from the second millennium BCE to the present. Organized by category, the following is the roster of the participating galleries:

Indian, Himalayan, and Southeast Asian Art:
• Art Passages (United States)
• Buddhist Art (Germany)
• Oliver Forge & Brendan Lynch, Ltd (England)
• Kapoor Galleries (United States)
• Thomas Murray (United States)
• Akar Prakar (India)
• Runjeet Singh (England)

Ancient and/or Contemporary Chinese Art:
• Fu Qiumeng Fine Art (United States)
• Ralph M. Chait Galleries, Inc. (United States)
• INKstudio (United States/China)
• Kaikodo LLC (United States)
• Zetterquist Galleries (United States)

Ancient and/or Contemporary Japanese Art:
• The Art of Japan (United States)
• Dai Ichi Arts, Ltd. (United States)
• Egenolf Gallery Japanese Prints (United States)
• Ippodo Gallery (United States)
• Joan B Mirviss LTD (United States)
• Onishi Gallery (United States)
• Scholten Japanese Art (United States)
• Sebastian Izzard LLC Asian Art (United States)
• Shibunkaku (Japan)
• Thomsen Gallery (United States)
• TAI Modern (United States)
• Hiroshi Yanagi Oriental Art (Japan)
• MIYAKO YOSHINAGA (United States)

Ancient and Contemporary Korean Art:
• HK Art & Antiques LLC (United States)

Runjeet Singh
Maharani Dhal (Shield)
Mewar, India
18th century
61.2 cm. (24 in.)

Kaikodo LLC
Large Fahua Porcelain Jar with the Eight Immortals
Ming dynasty, 15-16th century
H.32.5 cm., Dia. 32.8 cm.

Joan B Mirviss LTD
Wada Morihiro (1944-2008)
Kakugenki; Brilliance and Mystery Vessel
1997
Slip-glazed stoneware
18 1/8 x 5 3/4 x 5 3/4 in.
Photo by Richard Goodbody. Courtesy of Joan B Mirviss LTD.

HK Art and Antiques LLC
Incised Celadon Bottle
Goryeo Dynasty (12th Century)
H. 2 1⁄2 in. (6 1/3 cm.); Dia. 3 in. (7 2/3 cm.)

Just Published.....Great Mountains and Waves

December 15, 2022

Great Waves and Mountains: Perspectives and Discoveries in Collecting the Arts of Japan
by Natsu Oyobe and Allysa B. Peyton (editors)

This richly illustrated volume, just published this week as part of the David A. Cofrin Asian Art Manuscript Series by the University of Florida Press, addresses the history of collecting Japanese art and the factors that contributed to the growth of collections in North America following the Meiji Restoration in 1868. The wide-ranging essays, prepared by contributors that include Princess Akiko of Mikasa, Midori Oka, Akiko Takesue, Robert Mintz, Sinéad Vilbar, Wai Yee Chiong, Jeannie Kenmotsu, John Teramoto, and Vivian Li, fill in gaps in the scholarly investigation of the subject. Art historians discuss the historical development of the Japanese aesthetic and examine questions of connoisseurship, authenticity, and controversial collectors and their current-day reception.

The volume also features case studies on the formation of Japanese art collections in North America, exploring the diverse array of factors that contributed to their quality, contents, and the role that these collections play for their respective communities. Contributors delve into university and museum archives and interview art dealers, collectors, and artists to better understand their own collections. They present original research on cross-pollination and dialogue between artists from Japan and the United States, the development and growth of museums, and the personal histories of the people who shaped art collections. Together, these essays illustrate the shifting priorities in the collection of Japanese art across 150 years.

Bonhams Presents Netsuke from the Collection of Joseph and Elena Kurstin

December 14, 2022

Naitō Toyomasa (1773-1856), A Fine Wood Netsuke of Tengu no Tamago (Hatching Tengu), Edo period (1615-1868), 19th century, Lot 61, Estimate: $30,000-40,000

Netsuke from the Collection of Joseph and Elena Kurstin, Bonhams New York
Live auction, December 16, 2022, 10am EST

The culmination of more than 40 years of collecting, the Joseph and Elena Kurstin Collection of netsuke features a selection of masterpieces by a veritable who's who of carvers. Discover and bid on 61 netsuke by notable artists such as Masanao of Kyoto, Tametaka of Nagoya, Naito Toyomasa, and Seiyodo Tomiharu.

Dr. Joseph Kurstin began collecting while still a young man in St. Louis after a life-changing visit to New York. He later became a physician and settled in Miami, where he assembled a highly impressive collection. Dr. Kurstin became known to collectors and scholars for the quality of his collection and the breadth of his knowledge. He was also well appreciated for his generosity, with both his time, expertise, and loans from his collection. Among the institutions that have benefited from loans from his collection are Yale University Art Gallery; the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; Epcot Center; and the Tobacco and Salt Museum in Tokyo.

Gallery Exhibitions Closing Soon!

December 13, 2022

L-R: Hisao Hanafusa, Fifth Dimension-QM7, 2019, aluminum paint on canvas, 24 x 19 1/4 in. (61 x 49 cm), Fu Qiumeng Fine Art; Gold Lacquer Tea Caddy with Autumn Leaves, maki-e gold lacquer, 1990s, 3 x 3 x 3 in. (7.7 x 7.4 x 7.4 cm), Thomsen Gallery; and Nabeshima Plate with Polychrome Decoration, Edo Period (1690-1740), Dia: 20.5cm, Zetterquist Galleries

Japanese and Korean Ceramics, Zetterquist Galleries
Concludes December 15

The Japanese section spotlights excellent and rare examples of several important kiln-types, starting with an unusually large Jomon ritual food container dating to 3500-2500 BC, continuing on to Medieval stonewares from Bizen, Tokoname and Mino kilns that illustrate their continued use in the Japanese tea ceremony, and Japanese porcelains of two different types: Nabeshima-type and Kokutani-type.

A group of Korean Koryo Dynasty celadons is highlighted with a large rectangular tile with inlaid decoration of birds and foliage, one of only three such pieces known in the United States.

Read more, click here

 

Golden Treasures: Japanese Gold Lacquer Boxes,
Thomsen Gallery
Concludes December 16

The exhibition features exceptional works with designs in maki-e, which literally means "sprinkled pictures" and refers to the technique of sprinkling powders of gold and silver onto wet lacquer, a uniquely Japanese tradition that developed in the Heian Period (794–1185).

Read more, click here

Hisao Hanafusa: Borrowing Nature’s Powers, Fu Qiumeng Fine Art
Concludes December 17

Hisao Hanafusa: Borrowing Nature’s Powers is a solo exhibition of the Japanese-American artist’s most recent projects Cosmic Memory and Fifth Dimension, as well as examples of his highly acclaimed carpentry works. The two projects re-introduce Hanafusa through the East Asian way of borrowing nature’s strength and making it one’s own. Although the method of using natural processes to complete the work has been present in his work since the 1960s, it has never drawn significant attention. This exhibition foregrounds this methodology of power borrowing, and offers the audience an intrinsic and essentially philosophical way of understanding Hanafusa.

The exhibition is curated by Dr. Tingting Xu, the Arnaldo Momigliano Postdoctoral Scholar in the Division of Humanities at The University of Chicago. An exhibition catalog is available, including Dr. Xu’s introductory essay and her interview with Hanafusa.

Read more, click here

New Dasheng Chime-Bells at China Institute

December 12, 2022

Ancient Sound Made New: Experience the Brilliance of China’s Chime-Bells,
China Institute

In-person event, Friday, December 16, 6:30-8pm

China Institute invites visitors to a unique music experience with the New Dasheng Chime-Bells (大晟新钟), ceremonial carillon reconstructed based on historical models of Dasheng Bells (the Great Brilliance) of the 12th Century, connecting the sound of China’s dynastic rituals to the music world today.

This set of 20 new Dasheng Chime-bells, beautifully designed by Dr. Youping Li (李幼平) from Wuhan Conservatory of Music, are identical to their historical models except for pitches adjusted to match current and universal standards. New music for these bells with symphony orchestra, including Grand Prize winning compositions, will be performed at Carnegie Hall on December 29, when Valparaiso University will formally present the bells as a gift to China Institute, their new home in New York.

With the presence of these magnificent chime-bells, audience members will learn from three distinguished speakers—Joseph Lam, Youping Li, and Dennis Friesen-Carper—the extraordinary story of the new Dasheng Chime-bells, their journey not only a tale of cultural exchange through music, but representing U.S.-China relation in our time today. The audience will also have the opportunity to hear and interact with the bells during and after the program.

Read more, click here.

Bonhams Offers Asian Art Auctions in Los Angeles

December 11, 2022

Wu Guxiang (1848-1903), Elegant Gathering in the Western Garden (detail), 1891, handscroll, ink and color on silk, Fine Asian Works of Art, lot 72, Estimate: $6,000-8,000

Fine Asian Works of Art
Live auction, December 14, 3pm PST
Read more, click here

Decorative Asian Works of Art
Online auction, now through December 15
Read more, click here

Heritage Auctions Prepares Asian Art Showcase Auction

December 11, 2022

A Chinese Blue and White Lotus Dish, Kangxi mark and period, 1-1/4 x 6 x 6 in. (3.2 x 15.2 x 15.2 cm), Property from the Estate of Dr. Cornelius Osgood and Soo Sui-ling Osgood, Lot 25140,
Estimate: $2,000 - $3,000

Asian Art Showcase Auction, Heritage Auctions
Live auction, December 13, 10am CST

Coming next week is Heritage Auctions' live Asian Art Showcase Auction in Dallas. Featured is a beautiful collection of Chinese, Japanese, and Thai pieces of decorative art, including pottery, sculpture, and so much more.

Read more, click here.

National Museum of Asian Art Opens Unstill Waters: Contemporary Photography from India

December 10, 2022

Ravi Agarwal (born 1958), Riverbank I , 2007, inkjet print on paper, Gift of Drs. Umesh and Sunanda Gaur, © Ravi Agarwal, S2019.6.4

Unstill Waters: Contemporary Photography from India,
National Museum of Asian Art, Smithsonian Institution

November 10, 2022-June 11, 2023

Unstill Waters: Contemporary Photography from India features 29 works by some of the most prominent artists working in India. Through photography and video, these artists forefront the landscape of India, both real and imagined, as a powerful means to examine contemporary environmental and social issues of broader global concern. The exhibition will be on view in the Arthur M. Sackler Gallery during the museum’s centennial—and celebrates Umesh and Sunanda Gaur’s gift to the museum’s growing collection of contemporary Asian photography.

Visually dynamic in scale and format, the works in Unstill Waters offer vivid perspectives on the human relationship to place. Artists Ketaki Sheth and Gigi Scaria look to the streets of Mumbai and New Delhi as their subjects, while the landscape view becomes a highly symbolic setting for Sheba Chhachhi. Atul Bhalla and Ravi Agarwal convey the profound importance of water, specifically the enduring cultural connection to the Yamuna River in northern India, its current endangered state and the relationship between rivers and rapidly changing urban life. Unstill Waters complements the centennial exhibition A Splendid Land: Paintings from Royal Udaipur.

Scholten Japanese Art Presents a Special Look at the
Prints of Hasui

December 9, 2022

Kawase Hasui (1883-1957), Collection of the Theater Photo Album: Vol. 6 (7 issues)
(Engei shashin cho: dai roku maki)
, approximately 8 3/4 x 11 3/4 in. (22.3 x 30 cm.)

Kawase Hasui, Beyond the Landscapes, Scholten Japanese Art

Scholten Japanese Art has launched an online offering, Kawase Hasui, Beyond the Landscapes. Kawase Hasui (1883-1957) was well known for producing landscape and cityscape woodblock prints that depict different views of Japan throughout all seasons, and at different times of the day, expertly portraying the different moods of the time through his use of light, shadow and color.

However, beginning in the late 1920s and into the 1940s, Hasui began to frequently produce designs on commission for various magazines and other publications, breaking away from the landscape tradition for which he was known. Scholten Japanese Art now has available a number of these publications.

Read more, click here

A Wealth of Programs at the National Museum of Asian Art

December 8, 2022

Attributed to the Stipple Master (act. 1692–1715), Prince Amar Singh walking in the rain, Rajnagar, Sisodia dynasty, Reign of Amar Singh II, ca. 1690, opaque watercolor on paper, Purchase and partial gift made in 2012 from the Catherine and Ralph Benkaim Collection—Charles Lang Freer Endowment,
Freer Gallery of Art, F2012.4.3

In the coming days, the National Museum of Asian Art, Smithsonian Institution offers a variety of engaging and informative programs.

Monsoon: Histories and Futures
Hybrid event, December 9, 1-3pm
The monsoon looms large in the painting, poetry, and music of South Asia, its torrential downpours evoking loving, longing moods and auguring a season of abundance. This weather event has historically structured the year’s seasonal rhythms and played a role not just in agriculture, but in a host of economic, political, and legal systems. Today, climate change threatens to destabilize the monsoon, disrupting the lives of billions and requiring new adaptations to its increasing unpredictability.

Bringing together an environmental historian, an art historian, and a climate scientist, this program will speak to the history of the monsoon as both an ecological and a cultural phenomenon and its future in our changing climate. Exploring the influence of the monsoon on the rich visual archive of A Splendid Land: Paintings from Royal Udaipur will yield new insights into these paintings and the multifaceted weather system they dramatize.

Speakers include:
Dr. Debjani Bhattacharyya, Professor and Chair of the History of the Anthropocene, University of Zürich
Dr. Dipti Khera, Associate Professor, Department of Art History and Institute of Fine Arts, New York University
Dr. Sonali Shukla McDermid, Associate Professor of Environmental Studies, New York University

This event will take place in the museum's Meyer Auditorium and will also be streamed live online. An in-gallery, curator-led tour of A Splendid Land: Paintings from Royal Udaipur will follow the program at 4pm in the Sackler Gallery. Read more, click here.


Atul Bhalla (born 1964), Yamuna Morning IV (detail), 2007, inkjet print on archival Hahnemüle paper,
Gift of Drs. Umesh and Sunanda Gaur, S2019.6.6

Artist Talk: Ravi Agarwal
In person program, December 10, 4pm
Join curator Carol Huh and artist Ravi Agarwal to discuss works in the exhibition Unstill Waters. No registration required. Read more, click here.


Tomioka Tessai (1836–1924), Baisaō, Meiji era, ca. 1870, hanging scroll; ink and light color on silk,
Gift of Mary and Cheney Cowles, Freer Gallery of Art, F2020.5.47a–d

Sneak Peek—What Lies Beneath: Japanese Mounting Formats from
the Cowles Collection

Online program, December 13, 12pm
A hanging scroll is one of the most important formats for displaying paintings in Eastern Asia. In Japan, different styles of hanging scrolls developed—over time and with cultural growth–into a range of formats that always relate mainly to the painting subject. These various mounting types can be divided into two categories: one defined by levels of formality and a second, more general group referred to as literati-style mountings. These latter styles became popular around the Meiji period (1868–1912) due to renewed interest in Chinese art and culture. Combined with industrialization and dynamic social change at this time, historically unique and unusual mounting variants also appeared. This talk will give an overview of these styles and then focus on several examples of literati-style mountings from the Mary and Cheney Cowles Collection.

Akiko Niwa is a Japanese painting conservator in the East Asian Painting Conservation Studio, Department of Conservation and Scientific Research. She completed a seven-year apprenticeship training at the Monobe Gasendō studio in Kyoto, Japan, in 2011. She joined the National Museum of Asian Art in 2019 after receiving a PhD in Japanese mounting history and culture from Kyoto University of the Arts. Read more and register, click here.

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