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Special Exhibitions

Seduction: Japan's Floating World | The John C. Weber Collection

Seduction reveals the urban pleasures of Edo-period Japan (1615-1868) through more than 60 works of art, including paintings, kimonos and an almost 58-foot-long handscroll vividly portraying a visit to the Yoshiwara–Edo's most celebrated pleasure district. Our concurrent exhibition, The Printer's Eye: Ukiyo-e from the Grabhorn Collection, delves further into the floating world with a superb assemblage of Japanese woodblock prints. We are bringing the art of Seduction to life at our opening party Courtesans, Cooks, Samurai and Servents: Seduction Opening Party on Feb 19.


The Printer's Eye: Ukiyo-e from the Grabhorn Collection

The Printer's Eye features a superb assemblage of rarely seen woodblock prints depicting the "floating world," a phrase often associated with the entertainment and pleasure districts of Edo-period Japan (1615-1868). Delve into the art of the floating world and discover the hidden meanings, and exquisite craft, of these beautiful and complex images.

Tetsuya Ishida: Saving the World with a Brushstroke
Through Feb 22

Tetsuya Ishida once said he wanted his paintings to "depict the world as [he felt] it and let other people feel it freely." We are proud to introduce eight remarkable paintings that exhibit the range of Ishida's themes, including the pressures of academic and office life, social dislocation, the dulling effects of mechanization and the search of identity. Catch the exhibition before it closes on Feb 22.

From Two Arises Three: The Collaborative Works of Arnold Chang and Michael Cherney
Through Mar 1

When Chinese ink painter Arnold Chang and photographer Michael Cherney met for the first time in 2007, there was synergy. They recognized a compatibility between Chang’s personal brushwork and Cherney’s granular photographs. These 20 works, both individual and collaborative by Chang and Cherney, strive to bridge the gap between the traditions of Chinese ink painting and contemporary art.

Tradition on Fire: Contemporary Japanese Ceramics from the Paul and Kathy Bissinger Collection
Through Apr 5

Highlighting 22 works by 20 artists, this exhibition celebrates selected Japanese contemporary works from the Paul and Kathy Bissinger Collection of San Francisco. The works demonstrate how contemporary Japanese potters appreciate and continue the long tradition of ceramics, but at the same time depart from convention in search of the new.

Programs and Events

Lunar New Year Celebration: The Year of the Ram
Sun, Feb 8, 10 am–5 pm
FREE with museum admission

Celebrate Lunar New Year—an important holiday in many parts of Asia—at the museum. Students from the Chinese American International School and China Dance School and Theatre will perform music and dances, culminating with an energetic lion dance, believed to scare away evil spirits and secure a prosperous new year. Feeling adventurous? Learn stilt walking and ribbon dancing from West Portal Elementary students. Storytelling, art activities, martial arts demonstrations and a reading from children’s book author Oliver Chin round out an action packed day for the whole family.

Family Fun Days
Feb 1 and 15, 10:30 am–2 pm
FREE with museum admission

February Family Fun Days are centered around Chinese New Year. Learn about symbols for hope and prosperity with sustainable art projects inspired by flowers and plants. Sun, Feb 1 is a Target First Free Sunday! Enjoy an admission free Family Fun Day courtesy of Target.

Courtesans, Cooks, Samurai and Servents: Seduction Opening Party
Thurs, Feb 19, 7–11 pm,
$15 early bird / $20 regular

Bring the art of Seduction to life at our opening party. Interdisciplinary artist Midori will return to the Asian Art Museum armed with cardboard props, wigs and a frisky cast of characters to pepper the party with scenes from Seduction’s centerpiece—a 58-foot scroll depicting a lively visit to the Yoshiwara. Follow a detailed map of performances throughout the museum, or grab a cocktail and see where the night takes you. This bold and bawdy event—DJed by Proof (Massive Selector)—is your invitation to take in the exhibition, drink and dance, and experience the intersection of art and desire.


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

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