This year’s Asia Week New York runs from 15 to 24 March, 2018, with the Open House Weekend on 17 and 18 March. Tibetan bronzes and hanging scrolls, Japanese woodblock prints and contemporary ceramics, Chinese porcelains, Indian miniature paintings and more abound in this year’s shows. For further information on individual opening receptions, viewing hours, and supplemental lectures and events, please refer to asiaweekny.com. A selection of the many and varied gallery shows on offer is below.
Pick up a print copy of Asian Art Newspaper at many of the participating galleries that includes our map, New York exhibitions and a guide to the auctions in the week.
Freedom of Brush Chinese Export Blue and White Porcelains
Bardith, 15 to 24 March
New to Asia Week, this company specialises in European as well as Chinese porcelains and ceramics. On view are Chinese porcelains from the Kangxi period (1662-1722) until the later part of the Qing dynasty (1644-1912), including a vast array of blue and white wares. The brilliant colours are unmarked by time, and can be particularly seen in a Kangxi-period lobed bowl featuring landscapes and florals on alternating panels.
Bardith Ltd,139 East 79th Street, New York 10075, tel 212 737 3775, firstname.lastname@example.org, bardith.com
A Merger of Cultures – Buddhist Art of the Yuan and Ming Eras
Dr Robert R Bigler Asian and Egyptian Art, 16 to 25 March
Dr Bigler has chosen 30 Buddhist works to showcase, with a wide selection of sculptures, textiles, and other ritual items, specifically ranging from the Tibeto-Chinese aesthetic of the Yuan (1271-1368) and early Ming (1368 to circa 1450) dynasties. The 14th-century stupa on offer may have been used as a reliquary container, and presents as a votive object in commemoration of the life of the Buddha. Ropes of pearls adorn the stupa, showing a reverence for the deity that can also be seen as an indication of the political stature of the owner. In terms of the aesthetic, Dr Bigler suggests these features are the ‘missing link’ between the Yuan and Ming dynasties.
Robert Bigler at Dickinson Roundell, 19 East 66th Street, New York 10065, tel 212 772 8083, email@example.com, bigler-finearts.com
Spring Exhibition of Chinese Porcelain and Works of Art
RM Chait Galleries, 15 to 24 March
This well-established gallery has been in New York for generations and this year is offering a selection of imperial porcelain, jade, and Han pottery. An iron red and gilt porcelain from the Kangxi period (1662-1772) is exhibited beside an imperial Chinese birthday dish from the same era, which features a red rim. The so-called ‘birthday dish’ was so named as it is believed to have been used to celebrate and commemorate a birthday, or rarely but occasionally created to honour a long life.
Ralph M Chait Galleries, 16 East 52nd Street, 10/F, NYC, NY 10022, tel 212 397 2818, firstname.lastname@example.org, rmchait.com
Chinese Export Porcelain and Oriental Art
Cohen & Cohen, 15 to 24 March
In their first year at Asia Week, Cohen & Cohen present a wide array of art from 18th-century China, aimed at Western collectors. A highlight is an 18th-century punchbowl from the Qianlong period, dated circa 1788-90, featuring flags from European countries such as Denmark, the Spanish Philippines, France, Sweden, Britain, The Netherlands, and, most rarely, the American flag. The bowl is painted in famille-rose enamel, which arose to adapt to the changing tastes of the European market. Another fascinating object is a famille-rose figure of a European woman dating to 1740, dressed in attire of the Frankfurt Jewish community. Although the features of the porcelain face do maintain their Asiatic elements, the attention to detail in the outfit, complete with the wave of the robe, is animated and vibrant. More and more, it seems that there is growing interest in East-meets-West mentalities even in the distant past, as the market responds to its fusion in present day.
Cohen & Cohen at Carlton Hobbs, 60 East 93rd Street, New York 10128, tel 917 365 1145, email@example.com, cohenandcohen.co.uk
Collecting Chinese Art: Bronze and Chinese Imperial Masterpieces
Gisèle Croës, 15 to 24 March
While always renowned for truly exceptional large-scale pieces from the ancient world, Gisèle Croës looks at the history not just of the collection, but of the collectors. Although it is unsurprising that China has always had a reverence for the past, Croës explains that the fascination for collecting art in China dates back to at least the Tang dynasty (618-907). As such, she focuses on a collection of what would have been antiquities even during that period, dating to the Late Longshan culture (30th-20th century BC). Other works of art on offer include Buddhist statuaries, and items into the imperial world of the Ming dynasty (1368-1644) and the Yongzheng period (1722-1735). A highlight is the trove of bronze ritual items with fine green patina, as well as weaponry from the Shang dynasty (1600-1050 BC, including a bronze and jade axe. Another highlight is the bronze rider and unicorn from the Western Han dynasty (206 BC-AD 25) – the figures are almost whimsical in their rounded detailing and mythical qualities.
Gisèle Croës, exhibiting at Gagosian Gallery, 980 Madison Avenue, 4/F, New York 10075, tel 212 744 2313, firstname.lastname@example.org, giselecroes.com
Chinese Scholar Objects and Depictions
Nicholas Grindley, 15 to 23 March
On show are 18th- and 19th-century Chinese scholars’ objects, including a bronze figure depicted as a scholar, an engraved wrist rest, and a display stand so elegantly carved that it immediately catches the eye. The latter object bears reference to scholar rocks, as its richly formed lines mimic the shapes of natural world. While scholar objects are often more closely associated with paraphernalia of ink and reflection, these items share new sides of the Chinese literati in resplendent detail. The bronze figure has traces of gold lacquer, while the wrist rest is inlaid with camel bone roundels, and is engraved with a poem shared by the gallery as, ‘Red clouds, misty flames, floating frozen waves: Jade waters, jasper towers – drowning in distant fragrance’.
Nicholas Grindley at Hazlitt, 17 East 76th Street, New York 10021, tel 212 772 1950, email@example.com, nicholasgrindley.com
Chinese and Korean Works of Art
Michael Hughes 13 to 24 March
Michael Hughes has selected a censer, a brush pot, and a nephrite jade of a standing caparisoned elephant to point out the highlights of his show. Each object is exceptional in its own form, particularly the bamboo brush pot, which has fine detailed carvings depicting sericulture, or the art of growing and making that evocatively Chinese material – silk.
Michael C Hughes at Gallery Vallois America, 27 East 67th Street, 2/F, New York 10065, tel 212 933 4124, firstname.lastname@example.org, michaelchughesllc.com
Chinese Ceramics and Works of Art
Andrew Kahane, 17 to 20 March
Kahane has chosen to highlight a Chinese 13th/14th-century Longquan celadon vase from the Yuan dynasty. Its baluster form has an elegant curvature, open at the lip, and featuring raised florals across the item. This shade of celadon is a cooler, paler blue tone than some of the ruddier greens often seen among the glazes of this period.
Andrew Kahane, at The Mark Hotel,Suite 1207, Madison Avenue and 77th Street, New York 10075, tel 212 861 5001, email@example.com, artasianappraisers.com
Contemporary Asian Art Exhibition
KAI Gallery, 15 to 24 March
KAI, formerly FitzGerald Fine Art, is showcasing a selection of contemporary paintings by the Chinese artist Min Yiming (b 1957). The oil on canvas works vary in colour palette, ranging from yellow and black hues to cooler whites and vibrant pinks, but recurrent themes of cloudy abstraction marked by sharp perforations persist throughout the works.
Kai Gallery, 78 Grand Street, New York 10013, tel 212 966 3629, firstname.lastname@example.org, kaigallery.com
Kaikodo15 to 23 March
Kaikodo’s exhibition continues the gallery’s fascination with cross-culturalism, and this year it is again comparing and contrasting art from around East Asia. In a myriad of parallel similarities and differences, the showcase begins with the juxtaposition of the Ming dynasty (1368–1644) in China and the Muromachi period in Japan (1338-1573), each has a shared a historical reference to the aesthetics of Neolithic China. Under-glazes from China, Japan, and Vietnam also draw similarities, although Kaikodo highlights their differences. The showcase also features works from Korea. Kaikodo has in the past shown Chinese art made for the Japanese market, which is often typified by a more carefree and earthy style in these Chinese works. However, on offer this year is a dish that is the exact opposite: it is meticulously crafted, but with a Japanese subject matter.
Another example from this multi-regional selection is a fan dish, known as a kyoyaki (so named as it comes from the Kyoto). Its shape is unexpected and it has a thick, vibrant glaze. These objects are enhanced by Rimpa painting and Qing-dynasty porcelains. Kaikodo’s gallery is a uniquely passionate space with exhibitions designed for those who choose to keep learning.
Kaikodo, 74 East 79th Street Suite 14B, New York 10075, tel 212 585 0121, email@example.com, kaikodo.com
Art in the Age of Displacement
Robert Kuo and Findlay Galleries, 12 March to 20 April
California-based Robert Kuo & Associates, in collaboration with Findlay Galleries, presents art with a post-communist lens by Kuo Ming Chiao, Chuang Che, and Fu Shen. Looking at the works in context of the Communist Revolution is a personal matter – not just for the artists, but also for the gallerist and his relationship to his father. As such, this exhibition addresses the art historical compass post-1921 as it effectively transformed the social mindset, and the art world by proxy. Although the works of Kuo Ming Chiao, Chuang Che, and Fu Shen employ brushstrokes and vibrancy that evokes old world calligraphic style, each uses colours that are electric, and gestures more radical than refined. As such, the title of the exhibition was carefully chosen to reflect this sociopolitical tension as a means of a greater aesthetic shift: in the age of displacement, a new artistic style.
Most notable are the works of Kuo Ming Chiao, who worked with enamel on copper during the exhibited period of the 1980s. The bold colours are enveloping, a far cry from the regiment of the old world. More recently, oil and acrylic on canvas by Chuang Che also employs strong colours, but the use of white space suggests that perhaps the displacement is coming full circle. While Che’s works are enduringly abstract, the shapes evoke the landscapes prior to communism.
Robert Kuo, 303 Spring St, New York 10013, robertkuo.com and at Findlay Galleries, 724 5th Avenue, 7/F, New York 10019, tel 212 229 2020, findlaygalleries.com
Ancient Chinese Jade
JJ Lally, 16 to 29 March
The gallery is exhibiting more than 120 jades at Asia Week this year from the Neolithic period (circa 5000-1500 B.C.) through the Han dynasty (206 BC–AD 220). This large collection includes various carvings, pendants, beads, ornaments, discs, a ceremonial axe and a stem cup that span the centuries. Many of the objects have comparable items in museum collections, detailed by the gallery with accompanying illustrations. In the Neolithic period, examples from the Hongshan culture (circa 3800-2700 BC) and Liangzhu culture (circa 3300-2250 BC) include ritual objects such as a Liangzhu cong, as well as a Hongshan toothed mask. From the Western Zhou dynasty (1050-771 BC), a rabbit-shaped jade pendant stands out both for its zoomorphic interest, as well as its expertly executed sharp angular form. From the Warring States period (770-221 BC) is a bi disc, intricately carved with what the gallery denotes as ‘sprouting grain,’ and is dated to the 3rd century BC. However, these ancient jade objects are not the only element of jade in the exhibition: a jade stem cup adorned with two phoenixes is believed to have been used for drinking jade powder, as a means to preserve longevity. Needless to say, such rare highlights suggest that JJ Lally’s exhibition this year is a must-visit.
JJ Lally, The Fuller Building, 41 East 57th Street, 14/F, New York 10022, tel 212 371 3380, firstname.lastname@example.org, jjlally.com
Chinese Bronzes from Private Collection
Littleton & Hennessy, 15 to 24 March
In addition to a beautiful 15th-century, gilt copper alloy of Avalokiteshvara (noted for compassion in Buddhism the world over, and often referred to as Guanyin in Chinese), Littleton & Hennessy are also showing a number of beautiful bronze censers, used for burning incense during religious ceremonies. One large example, from the Song or Yuan dynasty, is dated between the 12th and 14th centuries, and noted for its impressive height of 16.3 inches, whereas another from the Ming dynasty (1368-1644) is bronze inlaid with silver.
Littleton & Hennessy Asian Art,at Daniel Crouch Rare Books, 24 East 64th Street, 2/F, New York 10065, tel 212 602 1779, email@example.com, littletonandhennessy.com
Song Ceramics and Works of Art
Priestley & Ferraro, 15 to 24 March
Priestley and Ferraro are showcasing glazed ceramics from the Song dynasty, and selected celadons. A highlight is a Jinyao teabowl from the early Southern Song dynasty. Jinyao translates to ‘hare’s-fur’ glaze with its indicative rich brown and black layered glaze to evoke the colours, as well as the textures, of the animal’s fur. In contrast, also on show is an 10th-century Five Dynasties, or early Northern Song dynasty, Yaozhou celadon ceramic bowl.
Priestley & Ferraro at 3 East 66th Street, Apartment 8B, New York 10065, tel +44 7802502937, firstname.lastname@example.org, priestleyandferraro.com
M Sutherland Fine Arts
Taiwanese artist and academic Huang I-Ming is a renowned calligrapher, known for his rough brushstrokes and calligraphic expertise. His work is typically deemed unpretentious and raw, characterised by coarse yet undulating lines. Though many past works are markedly linear, the upcoming exhibition utilises ink on paper to create sumptuous black pools, taking a massive step forward into abstraction. The controlled strokes have given way to richly detailed paintings, with the calligraphy techniques manifesting in textured, exciting works. From Resplendence to The Changes in Mother Earth, both painted in 2014, this is a seminal exhibition of Huang I-Ming.Huang is also esteemed for an East-meets-West mentality, with his Eastern training manifesting into Western abstraction. The works on view bear reference not just to the gestural heritage of calligraphy, but also to 20th century Abstract Expressionists in the West.
M Sutherland Fine Arts, 7 East 74th Street 3/F, New York 10021, tel 212 249 0428, email@example.com, msutherland.com
Eric Zetterquist, 16 to 24 March
This year, with a unique outlook, Eric Zetterquist tackles the origins, variations, and meanings of celadon with a truly amazing range of diverse objects. Challenging the word itself, originally taken from the description of French comedian’s coat in a 17th-century romance, it has evolved into art historical nomenclature for better or for worse. He looks into the techniques from the first variations in Han dynasty China (206 BC-AD220) and takes his scholarship across the various regions in Asia across the centuries, noting the stylisations that differentiate one piece from another, with each work presented with the same attention to detail. From bubbling jade to lustrous olive, each shade tells its own story of firing and taste. Represented, are Zetterquist trademark Song-dynasty (960-1279) celadons, including a Yaozhou leaf-shape box with phoenix, a Longquan zhaoudou jar with a bulbous body (used for banquets), and a ceremonial incense burner.
Eric Zetterquist, 3 East 66th Street, Suite 1B, New York 10065, tel 212 751 0650, firstname.lastname@example.org, zetterquist.com
Fine Japanese Prints and Paintings from 1750–1950
The Art of Japan, 16 to 19 March
Although the exhibition spans 200 years, the Art of Japan has chosen to emphasise art from the 1920s, such as work by Kitano Tsunetomi (1860-1947), in which The Heron Maiden casts her eyes downward across a slated grey, offset with flashes of red. This subject matter is characteristic of Tsunetomi’s work, as he often featured young beauties. Another beauty comes from Ito Shinsui (1898-1972), more striking with her richly painted black hair. Other prints, from Utagawa Hiroshige (1797-1858), focus on views of various regions in Japan, such as The Izu Mountains, as well as prints from the series Famous Views of 60 Odd Provinces.
The Art of Japan at The Mark Hotel, Madison Avenue and 77th Street, Suite 215, New York 10075, tel 206 859 9940, email@example.com,
Intimate revelations: Letters
Bachmann Eckenstein, 16 to 21 March
In addition to the ongoing collection of kitsungi, the Japanese art of gold-filled ceramics, Bachmann Eckenstein present a selection of letters, written in beautiful calligraphy. As communication is increasingly digitised, the intimacy of correspondence by hand through the ages is ever-more precious. One highlight is a letter by Maruyama Okyo (1733-1795), to Oku Doei, expressing his thoughts privately to a friend.
BachmannEckenstein,at Gallery Schlesinger, 24 East 73rd Street, 2/F, New York 10021, tel 212 734 3600, firstname.lastname@example.org, bachmanneckenstein.com
JAR and Jars
Dai Ichi, 16 to 24 March
Dai Ichi’s show is all about specially commissioned jars by artists ranging from the emerging to living National Treasures. The word for jar originated in words for flowers, and thus the works on view harness the power of the floral and the feminine, to be preserved as delicate and pristine. This is evidenced in works by Kim Hono, made in 2017, with budding facets of the jar interloping into one another, and Kato Tsubusa, whose blue tones evoke both tranquility and motion in the glaze. In contrast to the subtle tones of the first two artists, Matsuda Yuriko experiments with colour, mixed media and pattern. Each work has a unique frame of reference, adding a sense of variation not just to the ceramics themselves, but to the overall experience of viewing the objects.
Dai Ichi Arts, exhibiting at 18 East 64th Street, Suite 1/F, New York 10065, tel 212 230 1680, email@example.com, daiichiarts.com
Masters of the Genre Fine 18th-20th century Japanese Prints and Drawings
Egenolf Gallery Japanese Prints, 16 to 18 March
Egenolf has chosen to highlight prints by Utagawa Hiroshige (1797-1858) that focus on the Japanese landscape. From the Asakusa ricefields to the whirlpool at Naruto, both from the 1850s, shining examples of woodblock printing from the late Edo period give an exceptional angularity and sense of line. In particular, the whirlpool also features vivid colours, as the gradient of the blue sky in the background gives way to a fuschia horizon.
Egenolf Gallery Japanese Prints at The Carlyle Hotel, Suite 1015, 35 East 76th Street, New York 10021, tel 818 621 6246, firstname.lastname@example.org, egenolfgallery.com
Alan Kennedy, 16 to 24 March
Through textiles and costumes, Alan Kennedy offers a window into the lives of elites from the 18th and 19th centuries. Selections of both Chinese and Japanese attire range from aristocrats to Taoist priests and Japanese maidens. Gold and silver, silk and florals, all speak to a world of beautiful dress that provides insight into the day-to-day rituals and mindsets around East Asia.
One particularly interesting example is a Japanese kosode of the furisode type. The kosode is noted for the slits in its arms, preceding the kimono. The gold silk on view dates from the 19th century, and is supposed to be worn by an unmarried woman, as per a similar example in the textiles of the Nomura collection.
Alan Kennedy at the James Goodman Gallery,The Fuller Building, 8/F, 41 East 57th Street, New York 10022, tel 646 753 4938,
Three Giants: Kamoda Shoji, Matsui Kosei, and Wada Morihiro
Joan B Mirviss, 15 to 24 March
Joan Mirviss’s taste in contemporary Japanese ceramics is well known and this year she is presenting works by Matsui Kosei (1927-2003), Kamoda Soji (1933-1983) and Wada Morihiro (1944-2008), major innovators in the scheme of 20th-century Japanese ceramics. This is the first exhibition outside Japan for all three of the clay artists on view, and each have a unique style that has inspired future generations. Kamoda Shoji (1933-1983) has long been considered by many Japanese connoisseurs to be the greatest Japanese ceramic artist of the 20th century. In an unrivalled period of productivity from 1967-78, Kamoda transformed the aesthetic appreciation of modern ceramics in Japan, awakening the entire conservative Japanese traditional ceramic world toa new vision of the concept of ‘function’. All the artists sequestered themselves away in the name of innovation: Matsui evolved his mastery of neriage (a careful combination of colouring clay) as a priest, while Kamoda and Morihiro sequestered themselves away north of Tokyo, as a means to search deeper into their craftsmanship, breaking away from conservative contemporaries and an emphasis on classical motifs. Each has their own technique that challenges as well as celebrates surface and form, with geometrics, glazing, and rubbing techniques that have been esteemed for generations and continue today. Surface and form are complementary in harmony, with thorough attention paid to shape, decorative adornment, and overall effect. This exhibition runs with additional works presented as a solo show by Iguchi Daisuke, in an exhibition called, Depth of Time.
Joan B Mirviss, 39 East 78th Street, Suite 401, New York,10075, tel 212 799 4021, email@example.com, mirviss.com
Japanese Ceramics and Metalwork in Contemporary Design
Onishi Gallery, 15 to 24 March
Nana Onishi maintains her grouping of exceptional ceramic artists, including an extensive collection of works by Tokuda Yasokichi IV
(b 1961), who continues the traditions of her father, Living National Treasure Tokuda Yasokichi III. Delineating from a family of Kutani potters for generations, Yasokichi incorporates the traditional colour gradation of her heritage. In the aptly named Rising Dragon, the blue glaze spreads across the vessel with incredible mastery, smooth against a surface of carefully incised, petal-like shapes. This is juxtaposed with the continued roster of Ito Sekiusi V (b 1941) offering an earthy counterpoint, and Osumi Yukie (b 1945), also a Living National Treasure. Yukie is a renowned female metalwork artist whose Silver Vase Underwater is truly breathtaking, with the grooves of the metal undulating out methodically. Ultimately, this uniquely feminine showcase at Onishi continues to provide an excellent addition to the week.
Onishi Gallery, 521 West 26th Street, Lower Level, New York 10001, tel 212 695 8035, firstname.lastname@example.org, onishigallery.com
Japanese Art and Antiques
Giuseppe Piva, 15 to 24 March
Once again, Piva takes us into the world of the Momoyama period (1573–1615) Japanese elite, this time with objects from a world of leisure. Momoyama art is marked by decorative elements, as is evidenced by Piva’s selection. A sense of curiosity about the world pervades the show, with Western and Indian motifs prevalent in the Japanese items selected. A fubako, or letter box, from this period is decorated with European playing cards, with rich blues in stark geometric shapes and Piva points out that these boxes are considered rare. Also on offer is an elephant-shaped incense burner from the 17th century, with only two other similar objects believed to be on record.These evoke not only an attention to detail, but a broader sense of these cross-cultural connections throughout history, making the show a treasure trove not only of collectibles, but ideas.
Giuseppe Piva at Adam Williams Fine Art, 24 East 80th Street, New York 10075, tel 212 249 4987, email@example.com,
MIRROR MIRROR Reflecting Beauty in Japanese Prints and Paintings
Scholten Japanese Art, 15 to 24 March
Some 40 prints and one painting primarily reflect the show’s theme – on vanity and beauty from its earliest incarnations in Japan. The exhibition explores representations of the mirror, both as a theme itself and as a visual metaphor for viewing other subjects in floating world imagery. Mirrors appear in compositions as accessories or key props in a story being told and can function as ingenious framing devices, or as windows into private space. They provide seemingly endless opportunities for the artist to present an alternate view within a design.
The use of kagami, round bronze mirrors, dates back nearly 2,000 years in Japan to the Yayoi period (300 BC to AD 250). Early mirrors were intimate, usually approximately 4 inches in diameter, with a smooth side of gilded tin which was highly polished to achieve a reflective quality. Precious for their material and their function, mirrors were used for Shinto rituals as well as personal use. In order to slow inevitable oxidation and avert marring the finish it was necessary to avoid touching the surface with bare hands and otherwise keep them wrapped up or covered when not in use. The mirrors with handles, e-kagami, began to be used in the Muromachi period (1392–1573), and in the Edo period (1600–1858) mirrors grew larger, approximately 5–7 inches in diameter, often produced in pairs known as awase kagami (facing mirrors), to facilitate viewing the front and back of larger hairstyles.
An interesting print by Kunisada utilises the hand mirror not as a reflection of the beauty herself but as that of her ardour as a fan of a famous actor. The untitled print from the series Contest of Fans of Modern Actors depicts a young beauty seated beneath the large visage of the intimidating Ichikawa Danjuro VII (1791–1859) glaring down at her from within a cartouche in the shape of a folding mirror. By the early Meiji period (1868–1912) glass mirrors became available in Japan and largely replaced the use of traditional bronze mirrors.
Ukiyo-e artists frequently employed a mirror as a framing tool for portraits of kabuki actors or beauties and as a result, the view is exclusively of the reflection and the ‘real’ figure is not seen but implied. A fine example by Utagawa Kuniyoshi (1797–1861) from 1843 is Mirror of Women of Wisdom and Courage: Kaji of Gion, presenting an imaginary portrait of Kaji, the owner of a teahouse near the entrance to the Gion Shrine in Kyoto who was renowned for her poetry (a collection of her poems was published in 1707).
In addition to reflecting a crisp likeness, a looking glass could be manufactured in larger sizes and required no special handling or periodic re-polishing by a craftsman. In an amusing take on peeking into the boudoir with a newfangled glass mirror, we glimpse into the dressing room of a celebrity actor caught in the act of transforming himself into a role in a print by Toyohara Kunichika (1835–1900). The print irreverently shows the actor Kawarazaki Mimasu (Ichikawa Danjuro IX, 1838–1903, the fifth son of Danjuro VII mentioned above) as reflected in a mirror waiting for an assistant (unseen but for his hands) to lower a wig onto his head.
Scholten Japanese Art, 145 West 58th Street, Suite 6D, New York 10019, tel 212 585 0474,firstname.lastname@example.org, scholten-japanese-art.com
Realisation of Form: Masterworks of Japanese Bamboo Art
Tai Modern, 15 to 24 March
They have been making baskets out of bamboo for thousands of years in Japan, however, it was not until the introduction of the tea ceremony m around the 15th century, that the art of finely made articles connected to the ceremony began to become popular including baskets for flower arranging. The 19th century saw the rise of signed baskets by master makers in the formal and wabi-sabi style. The art has survived and grown in the 20th and 21st century with modern designers bringing their own ideas to the genre.
Tai Modern at Jason Jacques Gallery, 29 East 73rd Street, Apt 1, New York 10021, tel 312 560 8281, email@example.com, taimodern.com
Contemporary Lacquer by Yoshio Okada and Washi Screens by Kyoko Ibe
Erik Thomsen, 15 to 24 March
Erik Thomsen is showing contemporary artists who pay homage to two long-standing Japanese art traditions: Yoshio Okada (b 1977) in lacquer and Kyoko Ibe (b1941) in screens.
Yoshio Okada’s display is anchored by a set of four boxes depicting different phases of the moon seen through fleeting clouds. Using the time-honoured kanshitsu (dried lacquer) method, Okada made the boxes from layers of hemp cloth combined with the natural sap of the lacquer tree. Modeling the fabric before the sap hardened, he gave each of the boxes a profile that mimics the curve of the heavens, forming the perfect setting for their atmospheric decoration. After painstakingly polishing the black-lacquer surfaces, he applied the moon and clouds in gold and silver foil, thinly cut shell, and the unique Japanese technique of maki-e, relief decoration in gold powders combined with lacquer.
Working with recycled antique handmade washi (Japanese paper), ink and minerals, Kyoko Ibe creates large-scale dynamic designs that, in her words ‘offer our ancestors a new lease of life in the present’. Fashioned out of pulped and dyed paper that incorporates fragments from centuries-old notebooks, her folding screens such as Once Upon a Time, measuring nearly 12 feet in width, convey multiple layers of meaning.
Both oeuvres have been a part of Thomsen’s repertoire for many years, and studying them through living artists gives them a chance to fully delve into the nuances of past and present. In each of the selected works, a shimmer (in Okada’s case of gold maki-e, in Ibe’s of silvery ink) adds a sense of the ethereal to the craft. This otherworldliness of aesthetic is arguably the true unifier of the exhibition, approaching the objects as dreamlike escapes.
Erik Thomsen, 23 East 67th Street, 4/F, New York 10065, tel 212 288 2588, firstname.lastname@example.org, erikthomsen.com
Selections of Japanese Art
Hiroshi Yanagi Oriental Art, 15 to 24 March
Yanagi continues to emphasise zoomorphic figures in this year’s show, from the earliest piece of a a guardian dog from the 14th century, circa 1315, to a boxwood ‘seated puppy’ from the 19th or early 20th century by Izumi Sukeyuki. These animals prove to be a complete delight with their animated features but minimal detailing that still depict powerful expressions and emotions. A wooden figurine of Japanese Buddhist deities Fudo Myo-o dates into the 13th century, creating a historical narrative and imposing figure is the dominant highlight of the show. In addition, there is an Edo period (1603–1867) blue and white dish which features a map of Japan, which deviates from the more commonly seen patterns prevalent in porcelain wares of that era.
Hiroshi Yanagi Oriental Art at Arader Galleries, 1016 Madison Avenue, New York 10075, tel 212 628 7625, email@example.com,
Whanki Kim and His Circle
HK Art & Antiques, 16 to 29 March
Whanki Kim (1913-1974) is one of the most celebrated artists on the Korean art market. Drawing on his background in Korean landscape and styled imagery from his own country, he worked from New York with a unique blend of East-meets-West abstraction. A Seoul museum in the artist’s name opened in 1992. The gallery is showing watercolours on paper from the 1950s and 60s, drawn from his most prolific period. In addition to the works by Whanki Kim, works by Nam June Paik (b 1932) from the 1990s are also on view. This show a rare glimpse into a world of Korean contemporary interests, and a fusion of ideals and aesthetics fostered here in New York.
HK Art & Antiques at Jason Jacques Gallery, 49 East 78th Street, Apt 4B, New York 10075, tel 646 812 7825, firstname.lastname@example.org, heakyumart.com
Korean Contemporary Paintings and Decorative Traditional Arts
Kang Collection Korean Art, 15 to 24 March
Juxtaposing the old and new to fully reveal techniques in Korean art, the Kang Collection presents work by contemporary painter Seongmin Ahn, from 2017, in tandem with more traditional Korean painting, dating from the 19th and early 20th centuries. Seongmin Ahn (b 1971) is a painter and a teacher, listed as having shown at the Queens Museum and taught at the Asia Society and the Metropolitan Museum of Art. The recent work on view, Aphrodisiac 09, comes from a series of sensory discovery paintings. From food to sex, to people to nature, she delves deep into the passions of experience through boldly coloured, surrealist depictions. It is noteworthy that the subject of the primary example is a teapot, with its long-revered tradition of savouring the beverage and its meditative properties. The tea pours into rippling waves, making for an apt contrast to Swimming Fish in a Pond hanging scrolls from the 19th century, with the sea creatures seemingly floating down the page.
Kang Collection at Arader Galleries, 1016 Madison Avenue, 3/F, New York 10075, tel 917 566 0083, email@example.com, kangcollection.com
SOUTH ASIAN & HIMALAYAN
Walter Arader Himalayan Art, 15 to 24 March
Walter Arader continues to exhibit a strong collection of Buddhist bronzes from across the Asian region. This year, he has selected a Dali Kingdom (modern-day Yunnan, China) gilt and lacquered bronze Makhala to highlight the show. Twenty-two Dali Kings presided over the region from 937-1253, with esoteric Buddhism as its religion. A subset of a protector deity, Makhala, is the subject of extensive study by both Himalayan and Tibetan Buddhist scholars, with many postures and variations found of the figure, however, the dominant expression is one of wrath. Though rare, the four-armed, seated example on view has a similar counterpart at the Musée Guimet in Paris.
Walter Arader Himalayan Art, 1016 Madison Avenue, New York 10075, tel 212 628 77625, firstname.lastname@example.org, himalayanart.com
Treasures from Tibet
Buddhist Art, 15 to 24 March
The range of works on view is impressive, starting with a Khmer-period Buddha from the 7th century, from Angkor Borei (now in Cambodia). There are very few sandstone head scultpures on view at Asia Week this year, so this example is a welcome addition. It is offset by a bronze Shakyamuni Buddha from 15th-century Tibet and a 17th-century, gilded bronze Vasudhara. One of the most intersting objects is a zitan wood statue of Vajravarahi from Tibet, from the 16th/17th century, this wood is prized for its ability to mimic the sheen of bronze.
Buddhist Art at Arader Galleries, 29 East 72nd Street, New York 10021, tel +852 536 54644, email@example.com, buddhist-art.info
Art of India, Tibet, Central Asian Textiles
Carlo Cristi, 15 to 22 March
A copper alloy Avalokiteshvara from the 8th century, a stone pala from the 11th century, and a 14th-century thankga of a Vajrapani are highlights of Carlo Cristi’s selection. The gallery is also showing an image of a West Tibetan Prajnaparamita from the 11th century, on paper with gold, pigments and ink, with the explanation that this style mirrors the murals of Tibetan monastery in Tholing, and is an early example of philosophical texts that arrived from Kashmir. Prajna means perfection in Sanskrit, and paramita means wisdom, so this deity represents ‘perfection of wisdom’ which is seen in some the oldest Buddhist teachings. This reflection on theology is refreshingly different, and impressively preserved.
Carlo Cristi at Gallery Vallois America, 27 East 67th Street, 3/F, New York 10065, tel 646 309 7970, firstname.lastname@example.org, asianart.com/carlo.cristi
DAG, 15 to 24 March
During these politically charged times, DAG has decided to focus on the reformist art of Chittaprosad Bhattacharya (1915-1978). In a lifetime marked by World War, partition, famine and rebellion, his works document the suffering of Bengali villagers, beginning in 1943, as depicted in works from the following year. Born in West Bengal, he travelled throughout the region to various suffering villages to fully document the trauma of famine.The impact of his brush and ink works is powerful, as the message is conveyed through somber tones of black and white and jutting scraggles that suggest the impassioned strokes seek to decry the injustice.This artist is part of a humanitarian canon curated by the gallery: Somnath Hore, Zainul Abedin and Gopal Ghose, among others. And while this imagery differs from the standard fare of Progressive Artists, mid-century expressionists, and even the early 20th century Tagores, there is a long history of revolutionary ethos in the post-colonial works of India after 1945, largely deviating from the British-themed portraiture and regiment of old world traditions in miniature.
DAG, The Fuller Building, 41 East 57th Street, Suite 708, New York 10022, tel 212 457 9037, email@example.com, dagmodern.com
Indian Court Paintings
Oliver Forge & Brendan Lynch, 15 to 23 March
This year, Forge & Lynch celebrate their 10th annual Asia Week exhibition with a selection of Mughal and Rajput illustrations. Though their consistently exceptional of raja and emperor portraits persist, along with views into courtly lives and imaginations, Forge & Lynch have chosen to single out more unusually pieces this year as well. They feature two Mughal drawings from the 17th century of Solomon and Virgin and Child, which demonstrate an interest in Judeo-Christian tradtions, and a rare South Indian portrait of Tipu, Sultan of Mysore (1782-99), dated to 1825. Not to be overlooked is a Firdawsi Shahnama (the Book of Kings, the epic Persian tale) illustration from the 17th century, with a fantastic human-faced border. Whether the image is from Safavid Iran, or Mughal India, is still speculative. A stunning nightscene of Radha and Krishna from the Pahari hills brings back the romantic whimsy of more popular illustrations, and a 17th-century ragamala from Bilaspur features vibrant hues in red, yellow and blue. Ragamalas illustrate song through art, and the colours tell the story of the notes, which syncs with the gallery’s collections and their ability to revive lost worlds.
Oliver Forge & Brendan Lynch at 67 East 80th St, Suite 2, New York 10075, tel 212 327 2479,firstname.lastname@example.org, forgelynch.com
Persian and Indian Paintings
Francesca Galloway, 15 to 23 March
Galloway often shows Indian painting specialists at Asia Week, but this year has also added 16th- and 17th-century Persian royal manuscript pages to the showcase, alongside Mughal and Rajput paintings. One scene from Firdawsi’s Shahnameh, (The Book of Kings), dates to circa 1580. In the image selected, Iskandar comforts the dying Dara. Dara and Iskandar are half-brothers, and Iskandar vows to avenge his murdered brother’s legacy by reigning over a peaceful region. From the Shangri Ramayana, there is a painting of monkeys, led by Angada and Hanuman and the bear king Jambavan, in the southern region searching for Sita, who has been abducted. In another work, the demons Madhu and Kaitabha attempt to destroy Brahma, as he emerges from Vishnu’s navel from a 19th century Kangra Devi Mahatmya series has an ethereal white cloud, taking the mysticism to a new level. As such, the powerful images span various regions and historical moments in a long and rich canon of illustration, promising an academic attention to detail paired with a sumptuous exhibition of beauties, wars, and lasting stories.
Francesca Galloway at WM Brady & Co, 22 East 80th Street, New York 10075, tel 917 943 7737, email@example.com, francescagalloway.com
New Acquisitions in Indian Art and Himalayan Art
Galerie Hioco, 15 to 22 March
Christophe Hioco includes in the gallery’s show a Shakyamuni Buddha from the early 18th century in gilded bronze, as well as a bronze Buddha head from 14th-century Thailand. The latter work is described as the Uthong B style, a counterpart to the oft-distributed Khmer aesthetic, and is generally noted for hairline demarquations. The Shakyamuni on view, however, dates from the early 18th century, most likely from Mongolia or China. Its sheen is brilliant, unfettered by embellishments across the chest of the young prince and presents an unusual contrast to the Tibetan bronzes on view.
Galerie Hioco at Gallery Vallois America, 27 East 67th Street, 3/F, New York 10065, tel +33 69966 8816, firstname.lastname@example.org,
Intimate Moments Between Lovers
Kapoor Galleries, 15 to 24 March
Despite a selection of stone and bronze sculptures from Hindu and Buddhist traditions alongside thangkas and paintings, one of the more interesting elements of Kapoor Galleries’ exhibitions is the illustrations. The focus this year is on scenes depicting beautiful women in the context of relationships, with an attention to detail not only on the figures, but on their dynamics with their male counterparts.Two strong examples are Krishna Shares a Drink with Radha, circa 1800, from Kishangarh in North India (gouache heightened with gold on paper) and Lakshmi Massaging the Foot of Vishnu, circa 1810-20, from the Kangra school.
Kapoor Galleries, 34 East 67th Street, 3/F, New York 10065, tel 212 794 2300, email@example.com, kapoorgalleries.com
Suneet Kapoor, 15 to 24 March
In his first year as an independent dealer, Suneet Kapoor has chosen to highlight a Maitreya from 14th-century Tibet. Maitreya is a widely celebrated Bodhisattva, and the example presented with blue stone inlay on gilt copper is no exception. With this work, Kapoor is distinguishing himself as a bronze aficionado, apart from generations of study with the family-owned gallery. It suggests a discriminating eye for a long history of Buddhist scholarship, and of top-quality craftsmanship and detailing.
Suneet Kapoor at Arader Galleries, 1016 Madison Avenue, New York 10075, tel 516 343 5258, firstname.lastname@example.org, suneetkapoor.com
Himalayan and Indian Art
Navin Kumar, 15 to 24 March
Navin Kumar once again presents Tibetan thangkas and bronzes, as well as Indian court paintings. A highlight is an early 16th-century Green Tara mandala featuring 17 deities, in opaque watercolour and gold cloth. Green Tara, a Bodhisattva, is a female embodiment of enlightenment and protection. She is shown with Amogasiddhi, a Buddha, but her placement in the composition makes the Buddha reverent to the Tara. This form is highly unusual, and a key piece in this exhibition.This mandala was commissioned by Lhachog Sengge (1468-1535), a famous Ngor Abbot, who is well-known as a patron of many works of Tibetan art. Lhachog took vows at the age of 11, eventually working closely with his teacher, Konchog Pelwa (1445 -1514). Lhachog became the Abbot in 1516, and served for 18 years until his own death. This work intended to honour of Pelwa’s longevity, offering both protection and inspiration for meditative thought.
Navin Kumar at 24 East 73rd Street, Suite 4F, New York 10021, tel 917 721 0426, email@example.com, navinkumar.com
Susan Ollemans, 15 to 24 March
Susan Ollemans continues to emphasise jewellery from the 17th to 19th centuries, with a sampling of pieces from antiquity. The selection ranges across Asia, featuring jewels from China, Vietnam, Thailand, Cambodia, Indonesia, and India. Perhaps the most interesting highlight is five gold frogs from Burma, dated between 400 BC and AD200. Currently mounted as a necklace, they were originally decoration on a Dongson drum. The frogs are made in sheet gold, with lacquer interiors, and are most likely symbols of harvest and fertility.
Susan Ollemans at Antiquarium Gallery, 790 Madison Avenue, 7/F, New York 10065, tel 212 734 9776,firstname.lastname@example.org, ollemans.com
EXOTIC MIRROR: In the Eye of the Other, and Other Stories.
Alexis Renard, 15 to 23 March
Exotic can sometimes be misunderstood as something ‘other’ in such a way as to be problematic – at worst, even appropriated. But in this exhibition, Renard aims to show the power of the exotic, and its ability to bring together worlds for the better. Indian and Asian pieces depict European subjects, known widely as firangi, or foreigners. The images of the Europeans hail mainly from the 18th century. Notable among them is a Portrait of a Dutch gentleman, with his striking moustache, offset by ships coming into port in the background. He clutches a porcelain cup near his face, complementing the blue of the ocean with the foreground. But perhaps the most scandalous image is that of an erotic scene featuring a European couple, circa 1700, in Rajasthan. Nude and locked in a full-body embrace, four female figures dressed in European clothes frame them and look on. However, the women also have bindis and dark hair, marrying the aesthetic ideals of both cultures in this surprising scene. It is this in-depth look at cross-cultural perspectives throughout history that proves to be so fascinating, layering in precious objects from the past with images of ‘exotic’ foreigners to tell so many tales of travel, discovery, and (without pretence) lust.
Alexis Renard at Tambaran Gallery, 5 East 82nd Street, Lower Level, New York 10028, tel +33 6 80 37 74 00, email@example.com, alexisrenard.com
Arms and Armour from the East
Runjeet Singh, 15 to 23 March
Singh’s connoisseurship of weaponry from various regions India also extends to objects, in this show, from Tibet, China, Korea, Indonesia, and the Middle East. In addition to presenting a selection of 19th-century daggers, Singh ties iconography in 19th- century Tibetan objects to ancient Hindu narratives, revealing the power of the collection with a passion for historical accuracy and an illuminating imagination. Highlights include a Coorg pinchanagatti from Southwest India, complete with the original wooden scabbard and silver suspension chains, and a Rajasthani dagger with gold detailing of prayers along the handle and its original red velvet scabbard. Not only is it rare to see daggers and armour at Asia Week, but this collection remains outstanding by any standard. As an amalgamation of worlds across art history, it is a fascinating look at what ritualised weapons mean cross-culturally, and as wondrously beautiful works.
Runjeet Singh at Tambaran Gallery, 5 East 82nd Street, Basement, New York 10028, tel 212 570 0655, firstname.lastname@example.org, runjeetsingh.com
Buddhist Bronzes and Paintings from the Himalayas
Tenzing Asian Art, 15 to 23 March
A highlight from this show is the thangka of Thousand Armed Lokeshvara from the early 15th century. Among many names, reflecting its celebration across centuries and cultures, the deity is also referred to as Avalokiteshvara: the god of compassion. Tenzing’s example is distemper on cloth, in a brilliantly preserved colour scheme of reds and greens. A myriad of figures flank the central subject, whose arms spread across. The artist is Newari, which covers the region around Kathmandu Valley, known for its unique language and culture. Additional works include a Chinese Buddha Amoghasiddhi in gilt copper alloy, accented with pigment around the detailing and the face, and a carved wood seal of a dignitary from the Yuan dynasty (1260-1368).
Tenzing Asian Art at Van de Weghe Ltd, 1018 Madison Avenue, New York 10075, tel 415 269 4716, email@example.com, tenzingasianart.com