Monday, December 19, 2011

Books on Asian Art

These are five recent additions to our well-regarded collection of Asian Art titles:

Mongolian Buddhist Art: Masterpieces from the Museums of Mongolia - Vol.1 Thangkas, Appliques And Embroideries Part 1 And 2 edited by Zara Fleming and J. Lkhagvademchiq Shastri. Mongolian Buddhist Art: Masterpieces from the Museums of Mongolia presents for the first time 441 masterpieces of Mongolian Buddhist art from five major Mongolian museums: the Bogd Kahn Palace Museum, the Choijin Lama Temple Museum, the Zanabazar Museum of Fine Arts, the Erdene Zuu Museum and the Danzanravjaa Museum. Selected by the Centre for Cultural Heritage in conjunction with the curators of the participating museums, these pieces were chosen for their religious and historical importance, their aesthetic and technical quality, their uniquely Mongolian characteristics and their rarity. Volume 1: Thangkas, Appliqués and Embroideries is divided into eight chapters - encompassing within these three media the visual realms of the Buddhas and his disciples, mahasiddhas, Indian, Tibetan, and Mongolian scholars, previous reincarnations, yidams, dakinis, protectors and sacred architecture. Although constrained by the rules of Buddhist iconography and strongly influenced by Tibetan art, the Mongolians have succeeded in creating many works that are uniquely Mongolian, a highly expressive and vibrant tradition that can be seen in this volume. Dating from the late 17th to the 20th century, these examples provide rich materials for the present and future studies of Buddhist art and its heritage in Mongolia. This very substantial volume is itself divided into two separate parts and sold in a slip case.

Uncommon Wisdom: Works by Chng Seok Tin from 1966-2011. This catalogue of Chng Seok Tin's works was published in conjunction with an exhibition held at the Nayang Academy of Fine Arts in 2011. Chng Seok Tin (b. 1946) studied art in Singapore, UK, France and the US. Her works include drawing, painting, collage, mixed media, textile, photography, ceramic, sculpture and installation. She has held 25 solo exhibitions and participated in more than 100 group exhibitions in Singapore and abroad.

Sanyu: Catalogue Raisonné Oil Paintings: Volume Two by Rita Wong. Sanyu (1901-1966) was a Chinese artist from Sichuan province who lived and died in Paris. Integrating traditional Chinese aesthetics with Western modernist tenets, Sanyu has created a unique painterly language that is all his own. Dedicated to discovering as much as possible about Sanyu, the author has interviewed Sanyu's friends and gathered records pertaining to Sanyu's life. This is the second volume of her catalogue, which in addition to listing Sanyu's works, attempts to construct Sanyu's life in the form of an extended chronology.

Sequenza: Ho Chee Lick's New Ink Work edited by Teo Han Wue. This catalogue of Ho Chee Lick's (b. 1950, Singapore) works was published in conjunction with the exhibition Sequenza held at the Art Retreat Museum. It showcases the remarkable work of a contemporary Singapore artist working in an ancient traditional medium. Includes essays by Stephen Adiss, Low Sze Wee, Choy Weng Yang and Wang Zineng.

Negotiating Home, History and Nation: Two Decades of Contemporary Art in Southeast Asia 1991-2011. Assembling over 70 works from Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam, this exhibition showcases the visual brilliance and conceptual purpose of recent Southeast Asian practice. Providing regional comparisons, it illuminates the common themes, aesthetic approaches, and conceptual tendencies that have surfaced since the early 1990s. Commonalities coming to the fore include story-telling, the meshing of idea and visual seduction, and a belief in art-as-social-voice. Arguing for a view of the region's visual production on the region's terms, the curatorial references used to contextuatise the pieces are mined in Southeast Asian history, geography, and culture. The exhibition proposes the confluence of recent political history, profound social shifts, and artists' confidence vis-à-vis their deep-rooted cultural baggage as significant to the creation of the visually potent and conceptually original art of the last two decades.

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