Sydney Asian Art Series 2019

    • 	Image: Isfahan, Chehel Sotun (Forty Pillar) Palace, detail of the mural in the audience hall, Feasting reception hosted by Shah Abbas the Great, mid-17th century. Photo © Sussan Babaie
    • Art and urban culture

      Lecture / symposium

The 2019 Sydney Asian Art Series presents four leading international voices on early, modern and contemporary Asian art, addressing the theme Art and urban cultures.

From Isfahan to Edo, Kaifeng to Kolkata—cities have been major subjects, patrons and audiences for all fields of art. Indeed, the arts are part of the very fabric of urban life. These lectures explore the intersection of art, film and architecture in a range of Asian cities, historical and contemporary, considering urban spaces as sites of taste-making and sensorial plenty, as models for imagined futures, as vessels for us to recognise shared pasts, and as stages for the formation of political identities.

The Sydney Asian Art Series is co-presented by the University of Sydney’s China Studies Centre, The Power Institute, and VisAsia, with support from the Art Gallery of New South Wales and Sydney Ideas.

For more information see the Sydney Asian Art Series website

Various dates and times
28 March – 26 October 2019
See listing for details

Free, bookings recommended

 
Sydney Asian Art Series 2019: art and urban cultures VisAsia Council China Studies Centre, University of Sydney

Image: Isfahan, Chehel Sotun (Forty Pillar) Palace, detail of the mural in the audience hall, Feasting reception hosted by Shah Abbas the Great, mid-17th century. Photo © Sussan Babaie

    • Seeing taste: art, cuisine and urbanity in Safavid Persia/Iran

      Free, bookings recommended

      Thursday 28 March 6pm – 7:30pm

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      In the context of Isfahan, the capital city of the Safavid dynasty, Sussan Babaie examines the intersection of visual and gustatory experience as a self-aware obsession with ‘taste’, evidenced by works of art and historical cookery.

      Sussan Babaie, reader in the history of Iranian and Islamic art and architecture at the Courtauld Institute of Art, University of London.

      Sussan Babaie is Reader in the history of Iranian and Islamic art and architecture at The Courtauld Institute of Art, University of London. She is the author of Isfahan and Its Palaces: Statecraft, Shi‘ism and the Architecture of Conviviality in Early Modern Iran (2008, paperback 2018), and co-author and editor of several books including The Mercantile Effect: On Art and Exchange in the Islamicate World During the 17th and 18th Centuries (2017), Persian Kingship and Architecture: Strategies of Power in Iran from the Achaemenids to the Pahlavis (2014), Shirin Neshat (2013), and Slaves of the Shah: New Elites of Safavid Iran (2004, paperback 2017). She is working on a book about the intersections between visual and gustatory taste in early modern Iran.

      Location: Law School Foyer, The University of Sydney Law School, Camperdown 2006

    • Kolkata ‘rising’: the politics of place in recent Bengali cinema

      Free, bookings recommended

      Tuesday 21 May 6pm – 7:30pm

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      In May, Malini Guha considers how location shooting in recent films set in the city of Kolkata goes beyond documentation to reveal the aspirations, desires and anxieties concerning the city’s global future.

      Malini Guha is an Associate Professor of Film Studies at Carleton University. Her research is broadly concerned with spatiality and cinema, with a concentration on postcolonial and post-imperial modes of mobility, migration, displacement and settlement. Her first monograph, From Empire to the World: Migrant London and Paris in Cinema is a study of cinematic London and Paris from the perspective of migrancy, globalization and the end of empire in a British and French context. Her work has been published in journals such as Screening the Past and the Journal of British Cinema and Television. She is currently Resident Critic for Knot Projects public projection program, as part of SAW Video Media in Ottawa, Canada.

      Location: F23 Administation Building, The University of Sydney

    • Film screening: Interview

      Free, bookings required

      Wednesday 22 May 7:15am – 8:55am

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      Join us for a rare, free screening of Interview (1970), an acclaimed Bengali film by the late director Mrinal Sen (1923 – 2018). A groundbreaking film in terms of narrative innovation and cinematic technique, Interview tells a dawn-to-dusk story of a young man in search of a job. Starring Ranjit Mallick and Karuna Banerjee. This screening of Interview will be introduced by leading scholar of Bengali cinema, Associate Professor Malini Guha.

      Malini Guha is an Associate Professor of Film Studies at Carleton University. Her research is broadly concerned with spatiality and cinema, with a concentration on postcolonial and post-imperial modes of mobility, migration, displacement and settlement. Her first monograph, From Empire to the World: Migrant London and Paris in Cinema is a study of cinematic London and Paris from the perspective of migrancy, globalization and the end of empire in a British and French context. Her work has been published in journals such as Screening the Past and the Journal of British Cinema and Television. She is currently Resident Critic for Knot Projects public projection program, as part of SAW Video Media in Ottawa, Canada.

      Location: Domain Theatre, Art Gallery of NSW

    • A history of Japanese photography: Images of the city after disaster

      Free, bookings required
      Book tickets via qtix

      Saturday 24 August 2pm – 3:30pm

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      In this lecture, Dr Yasufumi Nakamori will introduce some little known, critical aspects of the history of Japanese photography, namely, photographic images and visual culture surrounding selected large-scale earthquakes, from the Nohbi Earthquake in 1891 to the 2011 Tohoku Earthquake. He will pay attention to issues such as technologies, circulation, and the impact of the images, and examine their relationship to collective memory and imaginary projections of a city.

      Dr Yasufumi Nakamori is Senior Curator, International Art (Photography) at the Tate Modern, London. Originally from Osaka, Nakamori initially studied law at the University of Wisconsin and practiced in New York City before undertaking a second career in art history following 9/11, going on to obtain his PhD in art history from Cornell University. Prior to joining Tate Modern, Nakamori was head of photography and new media at the Minneapolis Institute of Art. From 2008-2016 he was curator of photography at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, where his exhibitions included Katsura: Picturing Modernism in Japanese Architecture Photographs by Ishimoto Yasuhiro (2010) and For a New World to Come: Experiments in Japanese Art and Photography, 1968–1979 (2015). His award-winning catalogue Katsura: Picturing Modernism in Japanese Architecture, which documented the collaboration between photographer Yasuhiro Ishimoto and Pritzker prize-winning architect Kenzo Tange.

      Location: Domain Theatre, Art Gallery of NSW

    • Displaying reform: exhibitionary architecture and the Early Reform era in the People's Republic of China

      Free, bookings required
      Register via Eventbrite

      Wednesday 18 September 6pm – 7:30pm

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      We can think of design as an inherently anticipatory process. This lecture explores how a history of exhibitionary architecture that starts in the 1970s in China and abroad contributed to the Chinese Communist Party’s efforts to reposition itself relative to the world at large.

      Cole Roskam, associate professor of architectural history and theory in the Department of Architecture, University of Hong Kong.His research examines architecture’s role in mediating moments of transnational interaction and exchange between China and other parts of the world. He holds master’s and doctoral degrees in art and architectural history from Harvard University.

      Location: Law School Foyer, The University of Sydney Law School, Camperdown NSW 2006

    • Museums and cultural districts in Asia and Australia

      Free, bookings required
      Book tickets via Qtix

      Saturday 21 September 2pm – 3:30pm

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      If museums remain ‘narrative machinery’, what does it mean to be welcoming a string of new arts institutions in Sydney, Hong Kong, Shenzhen or Shanghai, today? Is it a question of what they say, or what they do? Gathering expertise in the history, design, and function of museums, particularly in China and Australia, this panel considers the rise of such institutions amid architectural and urban trends in the 1970s and 1980s in Asia and Australia, the impact of blockbuster exhibitions, the rise of the ‘starchitect’, and the rapid development of cultural institutions and museums throughout the region today. What is the role of the museum, as monument and vessel, alongside the rise of pop-up, temporary events such as biennales, and what does the proliferation of cultural districts today mean for tomorrow’s cities?

      Olivier Krischer is acting director of the China Studies Centre, University of Sydney. He researches the social role of art in modern and contemporary China and Japan, with his most recent publication being (as editor) Zhang Peili: from Painting to Video (2019), based on an exhibition he co-curated in 2016. He convenes the Sydney Asian Art Series.

      Anna Lawrenson is a lecturer in Museum Studies at the University of Sydney. She is interested in how the funding, history and administration of public museums and galleries influences their public offer in terms of brand, exhibitions and programs. Her most recent book is (with Chiara O’Reilly) The Rise of the Must-See Exhibition: Blockbusters in Australian Museums and Galleries (2019).

      Duanfang Lu is professor of architecture and urbanism in the School of Architecture, Design and Planning at the University of Sydney. Her books include Third World Modernism: Architecture, Development and Identity (2010) and Remaking Chinese Urban Form: Modernity, Scarcity and Space 1949-2005 (2006).

      Cole Roskam is associate professor of architectural history and theory in the Department of Architecture at the University of Hong Kong. His research and teaching include topics in 20th century and contemporary architectural and urban history as well as theory. He is particularly interested in understanding architecture’s role in mediating moments of transnational interaction and exchange between China and other parts of the world.

      Location: Domain Theatre, Art Gallery of NSW