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Asian Art Association

Art of the Silk Road and Japan with Patricia Graham

Global trade routes have for millennia not only served as a way for civilizations to reap financial rewards from foreign commerce but have also been essential conduits for domestic innovations, that have led to great cultural and scientific advances for the societies along their routes. The greatest of the ancient trade routes is the Silk Road that connected the East and West. Japan is widely regarded as its Eastern-most terminus, and the country s deep and varied engagement with it spans many centuries. Patricia Graham, PhD; professor, curator and researcher, will explore the various ways contact with the Silk Road enriched the artistic landscape of Japan at various points in time by showing the types of arts reaching Japan via its path and introducing Japanese collectors, researchers, and explorers of Silk Road materials as well as Japanese artists inspired by it from the sixth century to the present.


Barbarian Tropes Framed Anew by Tamara Bentley

Professor Bentley's talk examines three Chinese incised lacquer folding screens produced between 1665 and 1800. All three screens include segments depicting Europeans hunting exotic animals and parading with gifts; two screens specifically indicate that the Europeans are Dutch.  Analysis highlights the ways in which these Chinese screens borrowed foreigner  imagery from earlier Japanese Nanban screens, and also from earlier paintings of Mongols hunting, and those barbarian  constructs were even marketed back to Europe.

Sponsored by the Asian Art Association and Curator's Circle.



Technology and Culture changes along the Proto Silk Road

Dr. Rowan Flad, John E. Hudson Professor of Archaeology, Harvard University, shares the findings of his work in Gansu, China on the Tao River Archaeological Project (TRAP), 2012-2017.  Tracing the nature of technology and technological change migrating along the routes of the proto Silk Roads, and the changes wrought on the culture and society of the area by the introduction of that technology, Dr Flad discovered a complexity that radically transformed material culture and human lives in Northwest China about 4000 years ago.  That transformation laid the groundwork for the Chinese Bronze Age.  Free reception follows talk.



Two Masters of Intangible Cultural Heritage

Intangible Cultural Heritage is defined as traditions or living expression inherited from our ancestors and passed on to our descendants.  It includes practices, representations, expressions, knowledge and skills that communities, groups and individuals recognize as part of their cultural heritage. Tao Wang and Tianming Wang are recognized as Masters of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Shandong, China; Tao Wang in the  family business  of papercutting, and Tianming Wang in the carving of extraordinary tiny versions of everyday things.  The two Masters will share their knowledge and works in this Asian Art Association sponsored program.


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