Kanika Pruthi of Saffronart shares details about AAA’s upcoming Annual Fundraiser Auction in Hong Kong

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New York: The Asian Art Archive is a Hong Kong based initiative which  provides a platform for the research, writing and understanding of the history of contemporary art in Asia. It aims to re-imagine the role of an archive and to address the expanding space of the global narrative in art history. They are committed to creating a collection of resources for the public which is accessible to the masses, facilitating research on existing material and also encouraging new ideas and creative endeavours through their programs.

AAA’s Annual Fundraiser Auction serves as a major source of support for its programs, activities and aims to raise funds to extend its global reach, expanding the educational potential of the archive and redefining the way worldwide audiences learn about contemporary art.

This year the auction features 74 works of art, generously donated by galleries and artists from around the world. The works can be viewed from 21-25 November at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Center. Online bidding is open from 8-29 November and the live auction will take place on 30 November, 2013.

Among the many international artists featured this year, works from established and emerging artists from the Indian sub continent are included in the auction. These include Gulammohammed Sheikh, Atul Dodiya, Nalini Malani, Rajorshi Ghosh, Tanya Goel, Aditi Singh, Aisha Khalid and Huma Mulji.

Selected works can be viewed in the slideshow accompanying this post and the full auction catalogue is available online.

Books and Mortar by Asia Art Archive, Hong Kong

Tarika Agarwal of Saffronart discusses the impact of a Mobile Art Library in Sri Lanka

Open Edit: Mobile Library at Seva Christa Ashram, Jaffna, Sri Lanka, 2013. Exhibition view. Photo: Courtesy Raking Leaves

Open Edit: Mobile Library at Seva Christa Ashram, Jaffna, Sri Lanka, 2013. Exhibition view. Photo: Courtesy Raking Leaves

Mumbai: ‘Open Edit: Mobile Library’ is a traveling archive of contemporary art books drawn from the collection of Hong Kong based Asia Art Archive. The books will travel to locations around Asia, making it possible for broader audiences to access and interact with this unique learning resource beyond Hong Kong.

Preparations for opening of Open Edit: Mobile Library at Seva Christa Ashram, Jaffna, Sri Lanka, 2013. Photo: Courtesy Raking Leaves

Preparations for opening of Open Edit: Mobile Library at Seva Christa Ashram, Jaffna, Sri Lanka, 2013. Photo: Courtesy Raking Leaves

Following its first edition in Ho Chi Minh City in 2011, starting mid March all the way till early July, the library travels to Sri Lanka, making its first appearance in South Asia. When it was decided that the location would be Sri Lanka, Raking Leaves, an organization that commissions and publishes contemporary art projects was invited to act as its host.

It all begins in Jaffna, where the books will be housed at Christa Seva Ashram for three months, while the University of Jaffna’s Fine Arts (Art History) and Art & Design departments will integrate the library and its materials into their day-to-day curriculum activities. The project will be accompanied by a series of programs targeting artists, students, creative professionals, teachers, and academics. The project will also invite students and teachers from the Eastern University in Batticoloa and the Visual and Performing Arts University, Colombo, to utilize the rich array of materials in the archive.

Opening of Open Edit: Mobile Library at Seva Christa Ashram, Jaffna, Sri Lanka, 2013. Photo: Courtesy Raking Leaves

Opening of Open Edit: Mobile Library at Seva Christa Ashram, Jaffna, Sri Lanka, 2013. Photo: Courtesy Raking Leaves

The opening of the Mobile Library was held outside the Ashram between the many trees on the ashram’s grounds. There were roughly 300 people who attended the event; a lot of them were students who were very excited with this opportunity that has presented itself to them. A lot of the people are still surprised with the idea that Jaffna could be a place where people or things of any importance come.

When the library moves on, and all the books disappear, its true impact will take time to register. Some of the books among the 400 titles that make up this ‘Mobile Library’ are Faith and the City: A Survey of Contemporary Filipino ArtA Strange Heaven: Contemporary Chinese PhotographyThe Geeta Kapur Reader; editions of YishuChina Post–1989Currents in Korean Contemporary Art; six years worth of Art Asia Pacific’s Almanacs” and 10 Years of Video Art in Indonesia 2000–2010. By the time the library closes and the books are returned to AAA Hong Kong, it is anticipated that the collection will have been seen by over 1,500 art and design students, art professionals, teachers and of course the members of the Sri Lankan public.

To learn more about this initiative, read an article by Sharmini Pereira, an independent curator and founder director of Raking Leaves on the Guggenheim UBS MAP Global Art Initiative Blog.

Asia Art Archive to host a day-long conference on Art Writing in India

Manjari Sihare shares details of a forthcoming seminar on Art Writing in India

New York: Those in Kochi or that part of the world, please check out a forthcoming conference on Art writing in India organized by the Asia Art Archive and co-hosted by the Kochi-Muziris Biennale.

Fields of Legibility: disciplines and practices of art writing in India, is a day-long seminar which will be held on February 6, 2013 in Kochi. Asia Art Archive (AAA) is a Hong Kong based not-for-profit organization committed to documenting the recent history of contemporary art in Asia within an international context. Established in 2000, AAA is the most comprehensive publicly accessible collection of research materials in the field and it continues to grow through a well planned program of research and information gathering. Having set up its first Indian research post in 2007, AAA has over the years undertaken a number of research initiatives in the country, ranging from awarding a research grant to Vidya Shivadas in 2009 to critically survey the field of art criticism in India to a digitization project of the personal archive of Geeta Kapur and Vivan Sundaram in 2010.

Currently, the Archive is working on the digitization of the personal archives of four important pedagogues in Baroda, namely, professors K G Subramanyan, Gulammohammed Sheikh, Ratan Parimoo, and Jyoti Bhatt. It is also compiling an extensive bibliography of art writing in India since the late 19th century, across English and regional languages. This daylong seminar is the first in a sequence of such programs that will inform AAA’s research towards a series of anthology publications dedicated to the history of writing on 20th century visual art in India.


10am – 1:30pm

Welcome address and conference introduction

Keynote lecture by Prof. Susie Tharu (Professor of Eminence, Department of Cultural Studies, The English and Foreign Languages University, Hyderabad)

Panel 1: Writing on the Nation | Writing in the Vernacular
Chair: Prof. Parul Dave Mukherjee (Dean, School of Arts and Aesthetics, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi)
Saloni Mathur (Associate Professor, Department of Art History, University of California, Los Angeles)
Prof. Gulammohammed Sheikh (Artist and art historian, Baroda)

2:30 – 5pm

Panel 2: Sites of Discourse | Discursive Positions
Chair: Sadanand Menon (Art critic, Chennai)
Geeta Kapur (Independent critic and curator, New Delhi)
Raqs Media Collective (Artist collective and curators, New Delhi)

Summation by Prof. Parul Dave Mukherjee
Floor open for discussion

To learn more about the Asia Art Archive, click here. 

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