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MUSEUM OPENINGS
Asia Society Schedule of Events During Asia Week New York
March 16, 2011  | 
Asia Society is pleased to announce its schedule of events for Asia Week New York, from March 18–26, 2011. Events include public lectures, panel discussions, museum exhibitions, gallery talks and a gala benefit reception and dinner to promote understanding and appreciation of Asian art.

ASIA SOCIETY MUSEUM EXHIBITIONS
The Buddhist Heritage of Pakistan: Art of Gandhara
On view March–May 2011
Asia Society Museum presents an exhibition of spectacular Buddhist sculptures, architectural reliefs and works of gold and bronze from the Gandhara region of Pakistan, most never exhibited before in the United States. The Buddhist Heritage of Pakistan: Art of Gandhara reveals the complex cultural influences—from Scytho-Parthian to Greco-Roman traditions—that fed the extraordinary artistic production of this region from the first century BCE through fifth century CE.

At its height, Gandhara—whose center was situated in present-day Peshawar in northwest Pakistan—encompassed Bamiyan in Afghanistan, Bactria, the Hindu Kush, and the Punjab region of northwest India. Buddhism reached Gandhara as early as the third century BCE, and began to flourish in the first century CE as Silk Road trade and cross-cultural connections from the Mediterranean to China fostered its spread.

The majority of works in the exhibition are on loan from the National Museum in Karachi and Lahore Museum. Comparative works are included from the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Asia Society Museum, and private collections.
The exhibition is accompanied by a fully-illustrated catalogue published by Asia Society in association with the Kunst- und Ausstellungshalle der Bundesrepublik in Bonn, Germany. The book includes essays by leading scholars, including Christian Luczanits and Michael Jansen.

A Prince’s Manuscript Unbound: Muhammad Juki’s Shahnamah
On view through May 1, 2011
Asia Society Museum presents one of the finest surviving Persian manuscripts—an exquisite and richly illuminated 15th-century volume commissioned by the Timurid prince Muhammad Juki (1402–1444). This rarely exhibited manuscript, now in the collection of the Royal Asiatic Society of Great Britain and Ireland, features more than 30 miniatures that illustrate scenes from the Persian national epic, the Shahnamah (Book of Kings).

This is the first time that the intricately colored and gilded illustrations in the manuscript—recently unbound and conserved—have all been exhibited together in the United States.  Although it is not known when the epic was first illustrated, countless copies of this poem have been made through the ages. Written by the Persian poet Firdausi (ca. 935–1026), the nearly 60,000-couplet poem is based on a history of the kings of Persia, depicting legendary accounts of the beginnings of civilization until the Arab Muslim conquest that ended Persian rule in the 7th century.

The exhibition is accompanied by independent scholar Barbara Brend’s book Muhammad Juki’s Shahnamah of Firdausi, published by the Royal Asiatic Society/Philip Wilson Publishers (2010), the first complete study of the manuscript.

A Longing for Luxury: Chinese Ceramics from the Mr. and Mrs. John D. Rockefeller 3rd Collection
On view through September 11, 2011

Enjoy a selection of a dozen exemplary Chinese ceramics from Asia Society Museum’s world renowned permanent collection, the Mr. and Mrs. John D. Rockefeller 3rd Collection of Asian art. This exhibition presents exquisite Song through Qing dynasty porcelains and stonewares that collectors have coveted from the time of their creation to the present day.

GALA BENEFIT RECEPTION AND DINNER
Celebration of Asia Week
Monday, March 21, 6pm–11pm
Gala Reception (6pm–8pm), Dinner & Dance (8pm–11pm)
583 Park Avenue (at East 63rd Street)
Celebration of Asia Week with Honorary Chairs Renée Fleming and Naeem Khan features a chic Silk Road-themed cocktail reception and dinner of pan-Asian culinary delights from acclaimed chef Hemant Mathur, table décor by top Asian fashion designers, dancing and a live auction. This elegant gala presents art, fashion, cuisine, music and design from across Asia in one festive setting. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit AsiaSociety.org/asiaweekbenefit, email asiaweekbenefit@AsiaSociety.org or
call 212-327-9335.

LECTURES, DISCUSSIONS, FILMS
Changing Conceptions: Gandharan Art and Buddhism
Thursday, March 17 at 6:30 pm
Christian Luczanits, a leading scholar of Gandharan art, discusses how changing perceptions of the Buddha and bodhisattvas visible in Gandharan art indicate that the region was instrumental in the development of Mahayana Buddhism.
Free admission. Limited seating. Tickets available on a first-come, first-served basis beginning at 6:00 pm.

Dialogues in Contemporary Asian Art: Discussion
M.F. Husain and Monir Farmanfarmaian
Wednesday, March 23, 6:30 pm
Hear world-renowned artists, M.F. Husain and Monir Farmanfarmaian talk about their life and artwork. Husain is one of India’s most respected artists since participating in the Progressives Artists movement of the 1950s. Farmanfarmaian, awarded the Venice Biennale’s Gold Medal in 1958, has exhibited internationally and now lives in her home country Iran after having spent nearly a decade in New York. Moderated by Melissa Chiu, Asia Society Museum Director. Made possible through funding from Asian Cultural Council. Presented in conjunction with Asian Contemporary Art Week, a citywide event held March 21–31, featuring exhibitions, discussions, receptions, performances and more (locations and complete agenda at acaw.net).
$10 Members; $12 Students with ID/Seniors; $15 Nonmembers. Tickets available online at https://tickets.AsiaSociety.org or by calling 212-517-ASIA (2742) Mon–Fri, 1 pm–5 pm.

Dialogues in Contemporary Asian Art: Discussion
Ushio Shinohara and Tomokazu Matsuyama: Neo-Dada Mix / Remix
Monday, March 28, 6:30 pm
New York-based Japanese artists, Ushio Shinohara and Tomokazu Matsuyama, explore Japanese culture and history in a lively discussion. Shinohara achieved iconic status as a Neo-Dada artist in Japan in the late 1950s and moved to New York in 1969. Matsuyama, who has lived in New York since 2001, breaks up, remixes, and reshapes images of Japanese art. Moderated by Miwako Tezuka, Asia Society Museum Associate Curator. Presented in collaboration with Ethan Cohen Fine Art, New York, in conjunction with Asian Contemporary Art Week, a citywide event held March 21–31, featuring exhibitions, discussions, receptions, performances and more (locations and complete agenda at acaw.net).
Free admission. Limited seating. Tickets available on a first-come, first-served basis beginning at 6:00 pm.

New York International Children’s Film Festival
at Asia Society on Saturday-Sunday, March 19-20
New York International Children’s Film Festival teams up with Asia Society to present a stunning selection of new films from China, Japan, Hong Kong and Sri Lanka. The festival, held March 4-27 at a variety of locations, features over 100 films, premieres, workshops, audience voting, awards and prizes! Visit gkids.com for a schedule and ticket information. Asia Society members receive a special discount.

ASIASTORE AT ASIA SOCIETY MUSEUM
AsiaStore Special Sale Event: Scholars’ Rocks from the Collection of Kemin Hu Friday–Sunday, March 18–27 Personal appearance: Friday–Sunday, March 18–20, 1:00 pm–4:00 pm AsiaStore presents a newly acquired collection from Kemin Hu. Experience the power of scholars’ rocks or ―spirit stones‖—cherished by the Chinese for generations. Autographed copies of Hu’s books are available for purchase.
AsiaStore Special Sale Event: Asian Art Collectors Book Review Friday–Sunday, March 18–27
AsiaStore presents a vetted selection of the latest publications and must-read titles for Asian Art Collectors. Gain critical insight into the world of Asian collectibles, including ceramics, sculpture, textiles, painting, furniture, jewelry and more.

ASIA SOCIETY MUSEUM LOCATION, HOURS AND TOURS
Asia Society Museum is located at 725 Park Avenue (at 70th Street), in New York City. Museum hours: Tue–Sun (11 am–6 pm), Fridays until 9 pm (except from July 1 through Labor Day). Admission: $10 Adults; $7 Seniors; $5 Students with valid ID; Free for Members & Persons under 16. Admission is free to all Friday 6 pm to 9 pm.
AsiaStore hours: Mon–Sun (11 am–6 pm), Fridays until 9 pm. During July 2011 and from July 1–Labor Day, daily until 6 pm, closed Mondays.
Garden Court Café hours: Tues–Sun, 12 pm–3 pm. From July 1–Labor Day, 12 pm–2 pm For reservations, call 212-570-5202.
Gallery Talks: Tues–Sun, 2 pm and Friday, also at 6:30 pm. (Friday evening tours suspended during July 2011 and July 1–Labor Day.)
About Asia Society
Founded in 1956 by John D. Rockefeller 3rd, Asia Society is a nonprofit nonpartisan educational institution with offices in Hong Kong, Houston, Los Angeles, Manila, Melbourne, Mumbai, New York, San Francisco, Seoul, Shanghai, and Washington, D.C. Through exhibitions and related public programs, Asia Society provides a forum for the issues and viewpoints reflected in both traditional and contemporary Asian art.

For More Information:
www.AsiaSociety.org
Elaine Merguerian, 212-327-9271
elainem@asiasociety.org