What's Happening in Asian Art...

Asia Week New York ‘LIVE’ Zooms-In on Tales of Conservation, Science, and Asian Art on November 18 at 5pm EST

November 11, 2020

A Set of Seven Black-lacquer Boxes
with Silver and Gold Appliqué

China, Western Han dynasty (2nd-1st c. BCE)
Lengths range from 4.0 to 15.0 cm. (1 1/2 to 5 7/8 in.)
(Courtesy: Kaikodo LLC)

New York: Asia Week New York is pleased to announce that Tales in Conservation: The Application of Science to Asian Art–a live panel discussion featuring world renowned experts–will be held on Thursday, November 18 at 5:00 p.m. EST, 2:00 p.m. PST. This is a one-time opportunity to hear these speakers address issues that are important to collectors.

"Science and conservation are inextricably aligned in the field of Asian art and Asia Week New York is thrilled to bring together this highly qualified group of people to offer their compelling stories and perspectives on the subject," says Dessa Goddard, U.S. Head, Asian Art Group, Bonhams, and member of the Asia Week New York Planning Committee.

The participants include Leslie Gat, from the Art Conservation Group, Asian and Tribal art dealer Thomas Murray, of his eponymous California gallery, Mary Ann Rogers, founder of Kaikodo LLC, which specializes in Chinese, Japanese and Korean Art, and John Twilley, the highly acclaimed art conservation scientist. Each specialist will discuss specific approaches and scientific techniques in the conservation of ancient objects including gilt bronzes and Indian textiles. Dessa Goddard will moderate the discussion.

To register visit: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/tales-in-conservation-the-application-of-science-to-asian-art-tickets-128507783239

Indian chintz

Indian chintz transformed fashion, trade and technology
Courtesy: Thomas Murray Arts and The Royal Ontario Museum

About Asia Week New York
The collaboration of top-tier international Asian art galleries, the six major auction houses, Bonhams, Christie’s, Doyle, Heritage Auctions, iGavel, and Sotheby’s, and numerous museums and Asian cultural institutions, Asia Week New York is a week-long celebration filled with a non-stop schedule of simultaneous gallery open houses, Asian art auctions as well as numerous museum exhibitions, lectures, and special events. Participants from Great Britain, India, Italy, Japan, and the United States unveil an extraordinary array of museum-quality treasures from China, India, the Himalayas, Southeast Asia, Tibet, Nepal, Japan, and Korea.

Asia Week New York Association, Inc. is a 501(c)(6) non-profit trade membership organization registered with the state of New York. For more information visit www.AsiaWeekNewYork.com @asiaweekny #asiaweekny

About Songtsam, Presenting Sponsor
Founded by Baima Duoji, in 2000, the Songtsam Group is the only collection of luxury Tibetan-style retreats found across the Tibetan Plateau that offers guests sophisticated elegance, refined design, modern amenities, and unobtrusive service in places of natural beauty and cultural interest. With his long-standing and strong interest in Chinese, Himalayan, and Southeast Asian art, Mr. Baima started collecting art long before he established his first hotel, Songtsam Lodge Shangri-La, which is located next to the famous Songzanlin Monastery in Shangri-La. Many of the properties across the Tibetan plateau are decorated with Mr. Baima’s personal collection, with each hotel acting as a private art museum. For more information, visit www.songtsam.com.

Watch an excerpt from the Tales in Conservation webinar:

SEEN|UNSEEN New works by Akiyama Yo and Kitamura Junko and Ukiyo-e and Shin-hanga Part III Prints from the George Crawford Collection at Joan B Mirviss Ltd

November 4, 2020

Akiyama Yō (b.1953)
Untitled T-198
Unglazed stoneware with rusted iron coating
15 x 27 1/2 x 16 1/8 in.

Joan B Mirviss LTD presents new works by artists Akiyama Yō and Kitamura Junko created for their second joint exhibition at the gallery. The artworks of this Kyoto-based artistic couple are inspired by their teachers who co-founded the Sōdeisha ceramic movement, and both artists are known for conceptually daring works that shake loose traditional ties to functionality.

Considered one of Japan's most important contemporary artists, Akiyama Yō (b. 1953) creates powerful sculptures that look as if they were excavated from the earth's very core. He has won many prestigious prizes in Japan, and his works are in many important collections and museums both in Japan and in the West.

Kitamura Junko Vessel 20-G

Kitamura Junko (b. 1956)
Vessel 20-G
Stoneware with black slip, inlaid with white slip
17 3/8 x 10 1/4 in.

Kitamura Junko (b. 1956) brings a fresh perspective into a field that had long excluded female ceramicists. She covers the elegant curvilinear forms of her sculptures in ethereal geometric patterns with painstaking detail. Featured in American exhibitions focused on Japanese ceramics, Kitamura's works may be found in important museum collections throughout the world.

This exhibition is on view both online at Joan B Mirviss Ltd. and in the gallery by appointment.

Ukiyo-e and Shin-hanga Part III Prints from the George Crawford Collection is now on view online at Joan B Mirviss Ltd.

Toyokuni- A young man and two courtesans

Utagawa Toyokuni I (1769-1825)
A young man and two courtesans, accompanied by a servant, take a stroll beneath the blossoming cherry trees
ca. 1788
beni girai-e triptych sheet
Inv# 11879

Selected from George Crawford's extremely fine collection, this third group of prints by artists from Utagawa Toyokuni I to Kawase Hasui, provides an insight into the history of this art form and reflects the collector's excellent taste.

The print by Utagawa Toyokuni I is a late 18th century Ukiyo-e triptych while the landscape by Yoshida Hiroshi is a fine example of 20th century Shin-Hanga.

Yoshida Hiroshi-Mt. Betsu of the Tate Mountain Range

Yoshida Hiroshi (1876-1950)
Mt. Betsu of the Tate Mountain Range
Ōban yoko-e
Inv# 11360

To view the exhibition, go to Joan B Mirviss Ltd.

Thomsen Gallery at TEFAF Online New York 2020

October 30, 2020

Shigeki Kitani
Oni 1 (Demon 1), 1963
Oil, ink, and paper on canvas
31½ x 39¼ inches

One of our participants, Thomsen Gallery, will be part of TEFAF Online New York 2020, the art fair’s new digital platform. Each exhibitor will present one masterpiece.

Shigeki Kitani (1928-2009) was a leading Japanese avant-garde artist associated for 15 years with the influential Gutai collective.

Kitani's 2015 retrospective exhibition at the Thomsen gallery featured 28 works from the 1950s and early 1960s, many of them never exhibited before, which demonstrated Kitani's mastery of a gritty yet lyrical abstraction. Of the 28 works in the exhibition, 19 were preserved for many years at the Museum of Art and History in Ashiya City, birthplace of Gutai.

A fully illustrated publication, with an essay by the artist's son and his first detailed biography, is available from the gallery.

The Art of Japan at the New York Satellite Print Fair

October 27, 2020

Ito Shinsui (1898-1972), The Second Collection of Modern Beauties: Snowstorm, 1932, woodblock print (detail)

Japanese prints from The Art of Japan will be on view at the New York Satellite Print Fair for an additional week as the fair has been extended until November 8.

Nicholas Grindley: "The Online Scholar's Object Show"

October 26, 2020

A bamboo figure of a gentleman seated, leaning against rockwork, he holds a sprig of lingzhi fungus in his right hand and there is a basket of the fungus beside him; a scythe is balanced against the rocks behind the gentleman. He wears a long robe, falling open to reveal his chest and belly, and a cloth cap; his bare feet protrude from the hems of the robe. His hair, moustache and beard are incised, and his features bear a happy expression. 
Qing dynasty, 17th–18th century
Height 10.2 cm / 4 in.

Only a few days remain to view "The Online Chinese Scholar's Object Show" at Nicholas Grindley until October 31.

Nature Born: new works from Shigaraki master KOHARA Yasuhiro

October 22, 2020

Shigaraki Large Jar B 壺, 2020
H 16” x Dia 13.3”, H41 x Dia 34cm

The current exhibition at Dai Ichi Arts, Ltd., Nature Born: new works from Shigaraki master KOHARA Yasuhiro, will be up until November 13.

Dai Ichi Arts, Ltd has been showing Kohara's work since 1999.  Born in Shigaraki, one of Japan's ancient kiln sites, in 1954, he is self-taught.  He had neither formal schooling in ceramic art nor did he apprentice to a master.  Inspired by the local landscape and the Shigaraki pottery tradition, he uses the grainy clay of the region and glazes ranging in hue from champagne to amber to seafoam green to make spontaneous and self-assured work.

For more information, please contact Beatrice Chang @ 917-435-9473 or email to: daiichiarts@yahoo.com


Shigaraki Basket I 手付鉢, 2020
H6.3” x W14.5” x D13”, H16 x W37 x D33cm

In Her Eyes: In Memory of Laura de Santillana

October 22, 2020

H46 1/2 x W19 1/8 x D11 1/8 in
H118 x W48.5 x D28 cm
Courtesy of the Laura de Santillana Foundation

The exhibition, In Her Eyes: In Memory of Laura de Santillana, is dedicated to the late artist and friend of Shoko Aono and remembers her life, legacy, fine craft, and the person herself through her works in glass. 

Seven works will be featured, highlighting her iconic Tablet series alongside her latest Transparent Triplet Series.  Laura de Santillana’s material literacy and technique comes from her family heritage of Venini family glass-makers, combined with her personal exploration of art around the world.

Laura studied at the School of Visual Arts in Manhattan and has held exhibitions in Japan, Europe, the United States, and Israel.
Her work can be found in the collections of museums such as the Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York), the Victoria & Albert
Museum (London), and the Musée des Arts Décoratifs (Paris).

This exhibition is open for public viewing by appointment only from October 21– November 18 at Ippodo Gallery, 32 East 67th Street, 3rd Floor.

H14 1/2 x W12 1/4 x L2 1/4 in,
H36 1/2 x W31 x L5 1/2 cm
Courtesy of Ippodo Gallery

Madison Avenue Gallery Walk

October 19, 2020

Two of our participants, Ippodo Gallery and Thomsen Gallery, will be part of the 4th Annual Madison Avenue Gallery Walk on Saturday, October 24.  This free event invites the public to visit participating galleries and attend expert talks and tours led by artists and curators on Madison Avenue and adjacent side streets from East 57th Street to East 86th Street.

At 2:30pm Shoko Aono of Ippodo Gallery will speak about the current exhibition “Through Her Eyes: In Memory of Laura de Santillana.”

At 3:00pm Erik Thomsen of Thomsen Gallery will give an overview of his show "Japanese Bamboo Baskets,”  Japanese bamboo art over the past one hundred years.

RSVP is required to reserve your space at each participating gallery.

Our Two Dealer Participants Scholten Japanese Art & Egenolf Gallery Participating in IFPDA

October 17, 2020

Kitagawa Utamaro, Wakaume of the Tamaya in Edo-machi itchome, kamuro Mumeno and Iroka, ca. 1793-94 (Edo-machi itchome, Tamaya uchi Wakaume Mumeno Iroka), with mica ground, signed UTamaro hitsu with censor's eal kiwame (approved), with a kyoka, and publisher's mark of Tsuaya Juzaburo, ca. 1793-94, oban tate-e 14 1/2 by 9 5/8 in., 36.8 by 24.6 cm. 

Two of our dealer participants are exhibiting in the IFPDA Fine Art Print Fair online exclusive, which runs until November 1.

In addition to Japanese print classics, such as Harunobu, Hiroshige, Utamaro and Hasui, Scholten Japanese Art is featuring several prints from their September show, "Composing Beauty," an exhibition exploring ways in which bijin (lit. 'beautiful person') are presented in ukiyo-e.

The courtesan is Wakaume of the zashiki-mochi ('having her own suite') rank of the Tamaya house owned by Tamaya Hayachi.

In about 1792-1793, the publisher Tsutaya Juzaburo (1750-1797) began producing print series by Utamaro depicting half-length portraits of beauties with glittering full-mica backgrounds. These lavish images elevated print production to new heights, establishing both Utamaro and Tsutaya as pre-eminent ukiyo-e artist and publisher, respectively. 

This print is from a group of three which were likely intended as an informal triptych, each featuring a courtesan identified in the title cartouche with her house and naming her two kamuro with an accompanying kyoka poem. Of the three designs, this composition functions best at the central panel because the figure's body faces one way while she turns to look in the opposite direction, and one of her kamuro peeks out from behind in a rare instance of frontal portraiture.

Egenolf Gallery Japanese Prints has a special exhibition, "Images of Beautiful Women (bijin-ga) from the 1920s and 1930s," including an exceedingly rare mica ground early print by Ito Shinsui "Spring" (Haru) dated 1917. 

Ito Shinsui (1898-1972), Haru (Spring), 1917
A young, seated beauty reaches up to adjust her coiffure, which is charmingly accented with spring flowers. The artist himself said this about this work: “Spring is a pleasant and bright symbol, created within a small, sensuous feeling that results in turn from the colour rhythms.”  As noted in “The new wave”, this work provides an instructive contrast between two variant states of the same image: Initially 100 copies of one version were printed that had a rich white mica background (this example). Yet, later, at the artist’s request a second version was created in which the mica was replaced by a plain ground. In addition, experimentation has also occurred with the kimono motifs; the mica impression displays a striped patterned furisode, while in the other impression the woman wears one of solid blue.  This work also employed a format not seen in other Shinsui prints; the nagaban format.  There are two areas of blindprinting in the face, which provides a dimensional effect to the nose and jawline. Important, pre-earthquake design. From the first limited edition of 100, this is number 7. Dated and signed upper left “Taisho rokunen nigatsu Shinsu” (Taisho 6, February, Shinsui.)

Kitano Tsunetomi (1880-1947), Maiko (Apprentice Geisha in Kyoto), 1925

Very scarce design of a young geisha (known as a maiko) shown in profile. Her face is an opaque white, set against a soft pink/silver mica background. Her hair appears as if painted with a brush, and  includes strands of pink and red, as well as a number of youthful ornaments. Her neck is exposed and we can see the tie-dye technique of her robe. The pigments and printing style are unusual for a work from this period. The edition information is in the bottom margin; this is number 12 out of a limited edition of 100 prints. Oversized. Tsunetomi is primarily known as a nihonga painter, and he only published 11 prints, all of them based on paintings. 


The Art of Japan, a participant in the New York Satellite Print Fair on until October 25, is presenting a wide ranging group of prints by renowned artists including figural works by Utamaro and Kunisada as well as landscapes by Hiroshige and Hasui.

Hiroshige (1797-1858), Kameido Plum Garden, 1857; from the seires: 100 Views of Edo, 14.375 x 9.75 inches, Woodblock Print Fine impression, color and condition

Even if you are not familiar with Japanese prints, there are a few designs that permeate our visual culture so much that they are icons recognized by nearly everyone interested in graphic art.  Hiroshige’s two most memorable images include designs from the famous 1850’s series One Hundred Views of Edo. The first among these quite well known prints is commonly known as Sudden Shower over Shin Ohashi Bridge and Atake, depicting travelers caught in a surprise downpour while  crossing a wooden bridge.  The second design, one so revolutionary and striking that it also caught the eye of Vincent Van Gogh, is from the same series and commonly known as Kameido Plum Garden, depicting the "Sleeping Dragon Plum" of Kameido. Van Gogh painted a copy of this print in oils in 1877, and you can see the painting on permanent display at the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam.  


This tree, at the time was the most famous in Edo, and was known for the purity of its double blossoms. According to one Edo guidebook, were “Blossoms so white when full in bloom as to drive off the darkness." We are so close that we can almost smell the tree's powerful fragrance, reputed to have lured the shogun Yoshimune as he passed nearby in the early eighteenth century.  The “Sleeping Dragon Plum” survived in Kameido until 1910 when it was killed by a great flood. (Catalog notes from Brooklyn Museum website)

Lark Mason Associates' Sale of Asian, Ancient and Ethnographic Works of Art

October 15, 2020

Pair of Chinese Cloisonne Vases, 18th Century
Height: each 11 3/4 inches

Lark Mason Associates' sale of Asian, Ancient and Ethnographic Works of Art is now live on the iGavelAuctions.com platform until October 28.

Among the wide-ranging selection offered, the most noteworthy are a group of 18th century Chinese cloisonné, mainly acquired by an American Colonel in occupied Tokyo, just after World War II, huanghuali furniture from an American collector and ancient bronzes and archaic jades originally bought by an American collector from noted galleries CT Loo, Christian R Holmes Collection, Sydney Moss, and at Sotheby’s from the 1960’s to 1990’s.

Highlights include a pair of Huanghuali horseshoe back armchairs (estimate $50,000-100,000) and a Huanghuali three drawer coffer table (estimate $30,000-50,000). A pair of 18th century cloisonné vases purchased from Philip Colleck in New York in 1976 are one example of the very attractive group of cloisonné (estimate $5,000-8,000).


Pair of Huanghuali Horseshoeback Armchairs
Height: 36 1/2 inches

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