What's Happening in Asian Art...

None Whatsoever: Zen Paintings from the Gitter-Yelen Collection at the MFA Houston

March 8, 2023

Ito Jakuchu, Giant Daruma, late 18th century, hanging scroll; ink on paper, the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, the Gitter-Yelen Collection, gift of Dr. Kurt Gitter and Alice Yelen Gitter.

Through May 14, 2023
Tickets included with general admission here.

None Whatsoever features masterworks of Zen Buddhist Japanese paintings from the renowned New Orleans–based collectors Kurt Gitter and Alice Yelen Gitter spanning more than four centuries, complemented by selections from the MFAH collection of modern and contemporary art, with work by Franz Kline, Takahiro Kondo, Robert Motherwell, Ad Reinhardt, and Hiroshi Sugimoto, among others.

Zen paintings represent one of the world’s most fascinating religious and artistic traditions. None Whatsoever explores the origins of Zen Buddhism in Japanese painting through ink paintings and calligraphies by painter-monks, such as 18th-century Buddhist master Hakuin Ekaku, who expressed Zen Buddhist teachings through their art.

The exhibition takes its title from an 8th-century legendary encounter between itinerant monk Bodhidharma, and Chinese Emperor Wu Liang. When the emperor asked how much goodwill his generous deeds had earned in the eyes of the Buddha, the monk’s curt reply, “None Whatsoever,” shocked the ruler. This seemingly casual exchange has come to embody the revolutionary relationship in Zen Buddhism between student and teacher.

On view until May 14, 2023

generous support is provided by:
Luther King Capital Management
E. Rhodes and Leona B. Carpenter Foundation
Anne and Albert Chao
Mitsubishi Corporation (Americas)
Eddie and Chinhui Allen
Mr. and Mrs. Russell M. Frankel
Kathy and Glen Gondo
Milton D. Rosenau, Jr. and Dr. Ellen R. Gritz
Miwa Sakashita and Dr. John R. Stroehlein
Nanako and Dale Tingleaf

San Antonio Museum Senior Advisor Emily Sano Speaks on Japanese Baskets

March 6, 2023

Hayakawa, Shōkosai V (1932-2011), Line Construction Double Layered Flower Basket 2007, Madake, rattan Object: 8.3125 x 12 x 12 in., Otōshi: 6.75 x 3.875 x 3.875 in., Tomobako: 9.75 x 13.125 x 13 in., 4.5 lb., Collection of the Carl & Marilynn Thoma Foundation, © Estate of Shōkosai Hayakawa V, courtesy of the Carl & Marilynn Thoma Foundation, photo by TAI Gallery.

March 8, 6-7:30pm (CST) [in-person event]
Friends of SAMA and Circle Members only. Limited capacity. Registration required.

On March 8th, Emily Sano, Senior Advisor for Asian Art, will discuss Japanese baskets from the Thoma Collection, currently on view in “Creative Splendor. Following the presentation, Emily will answer questions in the Japanese gallery where attendees can see the baskets on display. Enjoy wine and light bites prior to the talk. The event is free, as limited to Circle Members and Friends of SAMA.

Three installations of approximately fifteen baskets each survey the outstanding accomplishments of Japanese basket makers active since the nineteenth century to the present day from three regions of Japan: The Kansai region, which encompasses the ancient capital, Kyoto; the Kanto region, which stretches westward from Tokyo; and the southernmost island of Kyushu. The exhibition demonstrates the specific techniques and styles of cutting and weaving bamboo that are particular to each of these geographic regions.

Dr. Sano is a curator and museum director with more than 50 years of specialty in East Asian art. A celebrated author and academic, she was awarded the Albert Nelson Marquis Lifetime Achievement Award by Marquis Who's Who for her work in museum administration in 2020. She has been active at the San Antonio Museum of Art since 2015.

To register for this event (and become a member), click here.

Are you ready for Asia Week?

March 3, 2023

Clockwise from bottom left: Fine and rare pair of Qingbai glazed vases and covers, Southern Song dynasty, circa 11th/12th century, Ralph M. Chait Galleries; The lion and the guardian dog, Kamakura period, 13th century, wood, Hiroshi Yanagi Oriental Art; and Hasegawa Chikuyū (1885-1962), Deep in the Woods (detail: right side of a screen pair), 1920s, pair of two-panel folding screens, ink, mineral pigments, shell powder and gold wash on silk, Thomsen Gallery

Chinese and Japanese art galleries are gearing up to exhibit exceptional works this month for Asia Week New York.

Ralph M. Chait Galleries, Inc.
Spring Collection of Chinese Porcelain and Works of Art
March 16-24
16 East 52nd Street, Suite 1002
New York, NY
35 notable objects include a remarkable pair of Large Famille Verte Vases and Covers with relief decoration, Kangxi period and numerous other fine objects and figures, many with important provenance. A fine group of Porcelain Production watercolors juxtapose with a Japanese porcelain figure.

Thomsen Gallery
Japanese Art 1910-1940
March 16-24
9 East 63rd Street, Floor 2
New York, NY
This period was one of great change for Japan’s arts, featuring experimentation with new materials and perspectives. Accompanying bamboo baskets and intricate gold lacquer boxes from the Taisho and Showa eras will highlight technical perfection.

Hiroshi Yanagi Oriental Art
Selection of Japanese Art: New Acquisitions
March 17-24
Nicholas Hall
17 East 76th Street - 4F
New York, NY
This veteran Kyoto-based dealer offers a wide selection of 13th, 17th, and 18th century works from Japan, including a Kamakura period set of lion and guardian dog figures and a stunning ink and color on silk scroll of Phoenix and Jurōjin, an auspicious figure believed to offer longevity.

Calling the Soul: the Rhapsody of Taihang⁠ at the Philadelphia Museum of Art

March 3, 2023

Bingyi (Chinese, born 1975), The Eyes of Chaos: Remaking the Song Palace, 2021–22. On loan from the artist.

Calling the Soul: the Rhapsody of Taihang⁠,
Philadelphia Museum of Art

In person event, Saturday, March 4th, 11am-12pm⁠
Seating is first come, first serve⁠

A performance alongside works by Bingyi is held in junction with Oneness: Nature & Connectivity in Chinese Art, at the Philadelphia Museum of Art. The showcase and its accompanying programs are made possible by The Robert H. N. Ho Family Foundation Global.

Based between Beijing and Los Angeles, artist Bingyi creates and talks about a new work of art responding to the COVID-19 pandemic. Bingyi directly engages nature and the environment in her creative process, which spans the categories of ink art, land art, and performance.⁠ Her monumental immersive ink installation The Eyes of Chaos was created in the mountains of Henan province during the pandemic and is currently on view in the Chinese Reception Hall, Gallery 326, in our exhibition Oneness: Nature & Connectivity in Chinese Art.

Dai Ichi Arts, Ltd. Celebrates Asia Week with Living National Treasures from Japan in INTANGIBLE HERITAGE

March 2, 2023

Matsui Kosei (1927-2003), L-R: Jar, Neriage, Cleft Marbelized, 1985, marbelized stoneware; Jar with "Marbeling" Neriage Glaze, 1990s, marbelized stoneware; and Jar, Neriage, Glaze Marbelized, 1986, marbleized stoneware

March 10-31

For their Asia Week New York showcase this March 2023, Dai Ichi will present a selection of ceramic Living National Treasures artists, showcasing the revered Japanese modern masters in a new light. Porcelain, stoneware, celadon and iron glazes range in style, suggestive of the leaders who pioneered their respective craft to great acclaim and legacy the world over.

The honorific “Living National Treasure” dates back to 1947, when Japan’s Agency for Cultural Affairs sought a system to preserve artistic heritage deemed “intangible”.  It signifies “Preservers of Important Intangible Cultural Properties (重要無形文化財保持者)”. Artists Hadama Shoki, Shimaoka Tatsuzo, and Isezaki Jun feature prominently in the showcase, as does the vibrant art of Tokuda Yasokichi.

Comparative Hell: Arts of Asian Underworlds at Asia Society

March 1, 2023

The Fathers of the People of Error Are Punished in Hell (detail), miniature from a copy of Hamla-i Haydari (‘Ali’s Exploits), India, Deccan, Hyderabad (?) ca. 1800, manuscript page; ink, opaque watercolor, and gold on paper, The David Collection, Copenhagen, 19/2015

Comparative Hell: Arts of Asian Underworlds,
Asia Society

February 28-May 7, 2023

From now through May 7th, the Asia Society is exhibiting Comparative Hell: Arts of Asian Underworlds, which explores portrayals of hell across Buddhism, Hinduism, Jainism and Islam in Asia. This is the first comprehensive exhibition of its kind in the United States, examining how systems of belief and the underworlds within them are manifest in the rich artistic creations of Asia.

Kawanabe Kyōsai (1831–1889, Japan), Even in Hell Money Counts (Jigoku no sata mo kane shidai), Bugs in the Food of the Hungry Ghost (Gaki no mono ni mushi), from the series One Hundred Pictures by Kyōsai (Kyōsai hyakuzu), Japan, Edo period (1615–1868), 1863–66 (Bunkyū 3–Keiō 2), Woodblock print (nishiki-e); ink and color on paper Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, William Sturgis Bigelow Collection, 11.37028

The cosmology of each religion is expressed through didactic paintings, sculptures, and sacred objects. Artwork on view portrays the ominous religious threats of fiery torture intended to shape values and beliefs, instill virtuous behavior, and encourage atonement for sins—reflecting a universal human desire for spiritual transformation. As different as they are, these ideas about judgment, punishment, and salvation after death are often shared by the varied traditions.

An illustrated catalogue accompanying the show includes contributions by curator and editor, Adriana Proser, and esteemed scholars Geok Yian Goh, Phyllis Granoff, Christiane Gruber, Michelle Yun Mapplethorpe, and D. Max Moerman. Copublished with Asia Society Museum by Officina Libraria, it is available for purchase at AsiaStore.

Read more, click here

Songtsam Laigu Lodge

February 26, 2023

Songtsam Laigu Lodge
Chamdo prefecture, Tibet, China

Facing Laigu glaciers and at the source of the Purlung Tsangpo River, Songtsam Laigu Lodge is located among snowy mountains, glaciers, and lakes beneath an enormous sky--truly a magical place that is out of this world. As Songtsam's highest property and the most challenging construction endeavor, Laigu Lodge was awarded Winner for Best Architectural Design/Heritage Architecture in the Architecture Master Prize of 2019.

The lodge contains 20 rooms: 16 deluxe rooms and 4 superior suites.

With prime consideration given to the preservation of natural and Tibetan cultural heritage, the building was designed to use modular prefabrication and to be embedded under a high cliff hidden from sight. The project maintains a very harmonious relationship with the texture of the original village.

L-R: Stewed yak ribs with yak soup and potatoes, butter ginseng jam with potatoes, walnut pie

Unforgettable mountain hiking and horseback trips are available, led by local guides, and filled with incredible views of the icy blue glaciers, snow-capped peaks, villages, and forests. When you reach the mountain's peak, savor the scene with a hot coffee and cake!

Available in the lobby bar and restaurant are exceptionally well prepared and healthy meals made of locally sourced food, such as yak meat from the alpine pastures, Tibetan pork raised by villagers, vegetables from Bomi, walnuts from Tacheng, and wine from Shangri La. All enjoyed while gazing out through the large picture windows at the surrounding mountain vistas.

For more information about Songtsam visit: www.songtsam.com/en/about


The National Museum of Asian Art Opens Two New Exhibitions

February 26, 2023

L-R: Ritual wine pouring vessel (gong) with masks (taotie), dragons, and real animals, Anyang or middle Yangzi region, ca. 1100 B.C., bronze, Gift of Eugene and Agnes E. Meyer, F1961.33a–b; Ritual wine-pouring vessel (gong) with masks (taoti) and dragons, middle or late Anyang period, ca. 1100 B.C., bronze, Gift of Arthur M. Sackler, S1987.279a–b; Ritual wine-pouring vessel (gong) with masks (taotie), dragons, and real animals, middle Anyang period, ca. 1150–1100 B.C., bronze, Purchase—Charles Lang Freer Endowment, F1939.53a–b (National Museum of Asian Art, Smithsonian Institution)

This week, the National Museum of Asian Art in Washington D.C. opened two important new exhibitions.

Anyang: China’s Ancient City of Kings
February 25, 2023–April 28, 2024
Anyang: China’s Ancient City of Kings is the first major exhibition in the United States dedicated to Anyang, the capital of China’s Shang dynasty (occupied ca. 1250 BCE–ca. 1050 BCE). The source of China’s earliest surviving written records and the birthplace of Chinese archaeology, Anyang holds a special connection with the National Museum of Asian Art. In 1929, one year after Academia Sinica began archaeological work at the Bronze Age site, Li Chi assumed leadership of the excavations. At the time, he was also a staff member of the Freer Gallery of Art (1925–30). To promote archaeological practice in China, the Freer supported Li Chi and his first two seasons of work at Anyang. This collaboration, predicated on the advancement of scientific knowledge and the protection of cultural patrimony, marks an important chapter in the history of Sino-American relations.

Ikeda Koson (1801–1866), Maple Leaves on a Stream (detail), Edo period, 1856–58, pair of six-panel folding screens, ink and color on gilded paper, Purchase—Harold P. Stern Memorial Fund and funds provided by the Friends of the Freer and Sackler Galleries in appreciation of James W. Lintott and his exemplary service to the Galleries as chair of the Board of Trustees (2011–2015), Freer Gallery of Art, F2014.7.1–2

Rinpa Screens
February 25, 2023–January 28, 2024
Explore a selection of screens painted in the Rinpa style, a movement known for stylized forms in bright colors that spanned the seventeenth to the nineteenth century. A complementary display of ceramics demonstrates the aesthetic exchange facilitated by trade between Japan and China and interrogates what makes a work of art Japanese.

Objects of Affection at Dai Ichi Arts Closes Soon

February 25, 2023

Hayashi Shotaro 林正太郎 (born 1947), Whirlpool Oribe Long Platter, stoneware, H.5.5 x W. 25.5 x
Dia. 14 in. (13.9 x 64.7 x 35.5 cm.), with signed wood box

Objects of Affection, Dai Ichi Arts, Ltd.
February Group Show
Concludes February 28, 2023

From small sake cups that rest tenderly in one’s hands to recent masterpieces by potters, Dai Ichi Arts presents a group of delightful objects to accompany you this February. The gallery is excited to exhibit a group show, showcasing the works of Shingu Sayaka, Inayoshi Osamu, Takada Naoki, Hayashi Shotaro, Kitamura Junko, and more.

Exceptional Japanese Prints Coming to Asia Week New York

February 23, 2023

L-R: Katsushika Hokusai (1760–1849), South Wind, Clear Dawn (Gaifu kaisei), circa 1831-33, color woodblock print, Sebastian Izzard LLC; Katsushika Hokusai (1760-1849), Waterwheel at Onden (Onden no suisha), from the series Thirty-six Views of Mount Fuji (Fugaku sanjûrokkei), 1830-31, The Art of Japan; Yamamura Koka (Toyonari) (1885-1942), Dancing at the New Carlton Cafe in Shanghai, 1924, woodblock print, Scholten Japanese Art; and Utagawa Kuniyoshi (1798-1861), Yoshitsune and Benkei on Gojo Bridge, circa 1839-1840, color woodblock diptych, Egenolf Gallery Japanese Prints

Four renowned Japanese art galleries will exhibit exceptional examples of woodblock prints in March.

The Art of Japan
Fine Japanese Prints: 300 Years of Japanese Prints, Ukiyo-e—Modern
March 16-19
The Mark Hotel
25 E. 77th Street, Suite 215
New York, NY
The Art of Japan will bring to New York and make available for in-person viewing an exceptional array of fine Japanese woodblock prints, including several notable new acquisitions.

Egenolf Gallery Japanese Prints
Prints and Drawings by Utagawa Kuniyoshi (1798-1861), Master of Graphic Storytelling
March 17-18 and online
Conrad New York Midtown (Private Suite)
151 West 54th Street
New York, NY
Utagawa Kuniyoshi, best known for his warrior prints, was a creative wellspring who designed works of graphic impact in every ukiyo-e genre. Egenolf Gallery will presents his works both in person in New York and online.

Sebastian Izzard LLC
Japanese Paintings and Prints: 1800-1860
March 17-24
17 E. 76th Street, 3rd floor
New York, NY
Celebrating their 25th anniversary, Sebastian Izzard will show exceptional Japanese paintings and prints from the 19th century, including maps, landscapes, dramatic historical tableaux, and studies of the natural world.

Scholten Japanese Art
MULTIPLE MASTERS: Modern Prints and Paintings
Ukiyo-e Woodblock Prints from the Shin Collection

March 16-25
145 W. 58th Street, Suite 6D
New York, NY
Scholten presents two (!) exhibitions this season: prints and paintings by early modern masters and “golden age” figure prints of the late 18th century with magnificent 19th century landscapes from the collection of gallerist Hong Gyu Shin.

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