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Special Exhibitions

First Look: Collecting Contemporary at the Asian
Opens Sept 4 | Limited Engagement

Sure, 28 Chinese is gone, but the “Summer of Contemporary Art” continues! We’ve spent the last 15 years enriching our collection with contemporary art, and now we’re ready to show off the highlights. Infusing traditional themes, mediums and cultural history with the urgency of present-day ideas, this show features pieces from Asia as well as the United States, including Bay Area favorites like Hung Liu and large-scale paintings by Manuel Ocampo. Don't miss our Thursday night kickoff event on Sept 3.

Woven Luxuries: Indian, Persian, and Turkish Textiles from the Indictor Collection
Through Nov 1

These textiles go beyond the wardrobe. Thread-by-thread, you’re invited to catch a glimpse into the richness and diversity of Iranian, Indian and Turkish silk velvets that vibrantly display shifting political, religious and economic histories. Pair your viewing with smooth jams to get you feeling as good as velvet: take a listen to this playlist inspired by Woven Luxuries.

Exquisite Nature: 20 Masterpieces of Chinese Painting (14th-18th c.)
Through Nov 1

Rarely before seen, these 20 masterpieces showcase landscape, birds-and-flowers, country life and historical stories while differing in style and geographical representation.

Picturing Sound, Creating Mood
Through Nov 22

Lean in and open every one of your senses. Whispers, trickling water and a bird in flight bring the sensitive viewer (rasika) closer to the essence (rasa) intricately detailed in this set of 12 paintings from 18th and 19th century India. Move past the painted surface and embark on a vivid multi-sensory journey.

Yoong Bae: Continuity and Pursuit
Through Dec 13

Exuding the calmness and harmony of someone at peace, Yoong Bae was known for blending Korean artistic traditions with modern Western art. For the first time in two decades, a focused selection of Bae’s paintings is on display. See eight representative pieces that introduce the late artist’s hybridized approach.

Programs and Events

First Look @ First Look
Thurs, Sept 3, 6–9 PM
FREE with museum admission ($5 after 5 PM)

Be the first to take in our new exhibition First Look. The museum will be buzzing with beats spun by Hakobo, and Museum Hack's team of renegade tour guides will convert museum naysayers into museum lovers. The evening's centerpiece will be a conversation at 7 PM with First Look artists Manuel Ocampo (Philippines) and Chen Man (China), moderated by assistant curator of contemporary art Dr. Karin Oen. Grab a refreshment at the cash bar, cast your eyes on First Look, fight “museum fatigue” with Museum Hack and be inspired by contemporary artists as they describe their processes. Share on Facebook.

Yoga Flow
Sun Sept 6, 11 AM and 12:30 PM
FREE courtesy of Target

Stretch it out with yogini Lorna Reed on the first Sunday of every month (Target First Free Sunday). Each hour-long session allows you to participate in practices that balance energy, align your body and prompt you to go inward. Please bring mats and wear comfortable clothing. This is a mixed-level class for visitors age 13 and up.

Korea Day
Sun, Sept 20, 11 AM–4 PM
FREE courtesy of the Korea Foundation

Can you believe this will be our seventh year of celebrating Korean culture with a dedicated day of performances, gallery tours, art-making activities, tastings and more? This year, you’ll meet Korean American artists, chefs and musicians. We're especially excited to present classically trained duo KABAM, who interpret Korean folk music through a contemporary lens. They'll be teaming up with a visual artist and electronic musician. You can also view art by contemporary Korean artists in First Look and enjoy guided tours of the Korean art galleries. The daylong schedule is pretty robust! Share on Facebook.

The Hinabi Project: The Art of Philippine Textiles
Sept 24–Oct 12, 10 AM–5 PM
FREE with museum admission

Honor the tradition of Philippine weavings and textiles through the Hinabi Project, an educational display hosted in partnership with Philippine American Writers and Artists, Inc. Discover piña, the unique fabric woven from pineapple leaf fibers, and the meticulous process of extracting those fibers and converting them into fine threads for weaving, embroidery and other embellishments. Share on Facebook.

In-Gallery Talk with Hughen/Starkweather
Thurs, Sept 10, 6:30 PM
FREE with museum admission ($5 after 5 PM)

Join artistic dynamic duo Hughen/Starkweather (Amanda Hughen and Jennifer Starkweather) as they discuss their installation Re:depiction. Commissioned for the museum’s Artists Drawing Club series in 2014, Re:depiction asked museum staff to describe an artwork from the museum’s collection from memory. Without having seen these artworks, the artists created abstract works based only on the interview recordings. The artists and interview participants—including curator Qamar Adamjee, storyteller Miriam Mills and museum librarian John Stucky—will describe the experience, reflect on the process and discuss the original objects in the collection galleries. Share on Facebook.

Save the Date:
Sun, Oct 4 - Filipino American History Month Celebration

For Members

Give Students and Teachers a Passport to the World

School’s back in session! Did you know we have special discounted memberships for teachers and students? Give your favorite teacher or student a gift membership. It’s a thoughtful gift that keeps giving all year long!

Preview Days

Members can enjoy private Preview Days before exhibitions open to the public. Become a member and join us on Sept 3 from 10 AM–9 PM to dive into First Look: Collecting Contemporary at the Asian.

Museum Store

KwangJuYo Ceramics

On a contemporary ceramic kick, the Museum Store presents new items from KwangJuYo ceramics. KwangJuYo is a multi-generational company located in South Korea. They’re known for exquisite contemporary creations and recreations of historic porcelain pieces. Their work is so exceptional it graces the tables of celebrity chefs around the world, including Corey Lee’s Benu right here in San Francisco.

Pictured: White Covered Case
Retail Price: $225.00
Member’s Price: $202.50

Our Recommendations

101 Pianists

In the heart of Sonoma’s wine country, 100 talented young Bay Area pianists join Chinese piano superstar Lang Lang on stage in Weill Hall at the Green Music Center for an inspirational concert at the culmination of an extraordinary educational journey. Sun, Oct 4 at 2 PM. Tickets $10. Learn more.

Special Offers

Celebrate Filipino American History Month with Monstress
Sept 16–Nov 22
A.C.T. The Strand, 1127 Market Street

Don’t miss Monstress showing at A.C.T., right in the neighborhood. Exploring the resilience of a Filipino American community struggling to find a home in the ever-shifting sands of the American dream, it’s a theatrical adaptation based on short stories by Lysley Tenorio, Philip Kan Gotanda and Sean San Jose. To save on select performances, use promo-code STRAND25 when ordering online or by phone at 415.749.2228. (All tickets subject to availability).


Asian Art Museum
Chong-Moon Lee Center
for Asian Art & Culture
200 Larkin Street
SF, CA  94102

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First Look: Collecting Contemporary at the Asian was organized by the Asian Art Museum. Presentation is made possible with the generous support of The Akiko Yamazaki and Jerry Yang Fund for Excellence in Exhibitions and Presentations, China Guardian Auctions, and an anonymous donor. Woven Luxuries: Indian, Persian, and Turkish Velvets from the Indictor Collection was organized by the Asian Art Museum. Exquisite Nature: 20 Masterpieces of Chinese Painting (14th-18th c.) was organized by the Asian Art Museum. Yoong Bae: Continuity and Pursuit was organized by the Asian Art Museum. Picturing Sound, Creating Mood was organized by the Asian Art Museum. Target First Free Sundays--free general admission on the first Sunday of every month and the family programs offered on that day--are made possible by Target. Korea Day has been made possible with the support of the Korea Foundation. Support for the Asian Art Museum's Filipino American History Month Celebration is generously provided by AARP.

An Object at the Limits of Language – Necromantic KIPPIAN Emancipator: No. 2 (detail), 2000, by Manuel Ocampo (Filipino, b. 1965). Oil on linen. Courtesy of Asian Art Museum of San Francisco, Gift of Malou Babilonia, 2007.78. © Manuel Ocampo. Photograph © Asian Art Museum of San Francisco. Textile (detail), 1500–1600. Turkey, Ottoman period (approx. 1299–1923). Cut and voided velvet with supplementary weft patterning; silk and metal-wrapped thread. Courtesy of Rina & Norman Indictor. Photograph © Rina & Norman Indictor, photo by Sheldan Collins. Landscape in Snow (detail), by Tang Dai (Chinese, 1673–after 1752). Hanging scroll; ink and colors on paper. Courtesy of Asian Art Museum, San Francisco, Gift of the Tang family in memory of P. Y. and Kinmay Wen Tang, 1992.62. Photograph © Asian Art Museum of San Francisco. Lovers parting during a rainy night, symbolizing a musical mode (Lalita Ragini) (detail), approx. 1700. India; Rajasthan state. Opaque watercolors on paper. Courtesy of Asian Art Museum of San Francisco, Gift of Dr. Narinder S. and Satinder Kapany, 2004.76. Photograph © Asian Art Museum of San Francisco. Meditation (detail), 1991, by Yoong Bae (Korean, 1928–1992). Ink and colors on paper. Courtesy of Asian Art Museum of San Francisco, Gift of Kyung-Hee Bae in memory of Yoong Bae, 1994.70. © Estate of Yoong Bae. Photograph © Asian Art Museum of San Francisco. Brush Symphony (detail), 1998, by C. C. Wang (Chinese, 1907–2003). Ink on paper. Courtesy of Asian Art Museum, Gift of the Yiqingzhai Collection, 2005.58. © Estate of C. C. Wang. Photograph © Asian Art Museum of San Francisco. The Night of Perpetual Day (detail), Edition 3 of 7, 2013, by Yang Yongliang (Chinese, b. 1980). HD video, 4 channel with soundtrack. Courtesy of Asian Art Museum of San Francisco, Acquisition made possible by Gorretti and Lawrence Lui, with additional funding from Richard Beleson, 2014.14. © Yang Yongliang.

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