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Special Exhibitions

Seduction: Japan's Floating World | The John C. Weber Collection
Through May 10

Explore the creative explosion unleashed by the new entertainment districts established in Edo (present-day Tokyo) during the late 1600s. Including more than 50 works, the exhibition takes a new lens to the floating world and its representation in art, juxtaposing paintings and woodblock prints with textiles, ceramics, lacquers and other daily-life objects from the Edo period. A highlight is an almost 58-foot-long captivating handscroll vividly portraying the Yoshiwara–Edo's most celebrated pleasure quarter.

The Printer's Eye: Ukiyo-e from the Grabhorn Collection
Through May 10

Meet 88 works from the Grabhorn Collection. Ukiyo-e, or "pictures of the floating world," is the term for woodblock prints depicting the myriad pleasures and activities available to urban residents during Japan's long Edo period (1615–1868).

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

Ceramics by artists have been lifted to a new and exciting level of technique and innovation in this intimate and surprising display.

Exquisite Nature: 20 Masterpieces of Chinese Paintings
(14th–18th c.)


Representing masterpieces from the Yuan, Ming and Qing dynasties, Exquisite Nature features several extremely rare works by the great masters of Chinese painting including Ni Zan (1301–1374).

Woven Luxuries: Indian, Persian, and Turkish Textiles from the Indictor Collection
OPENS Mar 13

Spanning three distinct cultural areas with their own design sensibilities and tastes, this group of textiles showcases different techniques of velvet production and suggests their varied uses. Showing the cultural exchange between the Munghal, Safavid and Ottoman empires, Woven Luxuries will astound and amaze.

Programs and Events

The Box Project
Sun, Mar 1, 11 AM–2 PM
FREE courtesy of Target

The Box Project is a workshop for parents and kids developed by San Francisco artist, Eliza Gregory. Participants alter and play with cardboard boxes as they would at home, but on an unusually grand scale. Materials include reused cardboard donated by local businesses, which we recycle at the end of the day. Parenting educator Nancy Gapasin Gnass provides information about parenting and creativity for participants, and is on hand to answer questions and provide an intellectual framework for the experience. Part of the fun in building this cardboard world is tearing it all down! Come back to Samsung Hall at 4pm for to partake in a Moment of Destruction!

This event is part of Family Fun Days and is completely FREE courtesy of Target First Free Sundays. Join us again on Sun, Mar 15 for another Family Fun Day.

SFUSD Arts Festival Community Celebration
Thurs, Mar 5, 5–8 PM

Bring your families to the SFUSD Arts Festival Community Celebration and enjoy performances throughout the night, as well as exhibits of visual, literary and media arts by students from San Francisco schools. Mingle with other families, school staff and community stakeholders at a light reception, and honor exemplary arts educators and programs at SFUSD's annual Dreamcatcher Ceremony.

AsiaAlive: Noh-Kyogen Now
Sat, Mar 14 & 28, 12–4 PM
FREE with admission

Actors from the ensemble Theatre of Yugen present an intriguing reinterpretation of Japanese Noh-Kyogen theater. Classical plays are performed with contemporary counterparts. With updated language, context and style, the interactive reinterpretations reflect the growth of tradition into the contemporary, the bridging of old and new.

Artists Drawing Club with Erik Scollon
Thurs, Mar 19, 6:30–9 PM
FREE with admission

When a potter throws on the potter's wheel the form slowly emerges, unlike drawing which can quickly result in an outline. Bay Area ceramist Erik Scollon will lead you through a meditative drawing exercise, which is akin to the slow finding of form that is used by potters. Join the artist as he discusses ceramic works in the galleries and leads participants through the study of form. This event is part of our Thursday Nights series, when admission is just $5 after 5 PM.

A Child Like Me: Yuki Morishima in Conversation with Tatsu Aoki
Thurs, Mar 19, 7–8:30 PM
FREE with admission

Musician and performer Tatsu Aoki was born and raised in a geisha house in Tokyo. He’ll discuss fantasy, constructed realities and the many misconceptions surrounding Japan’s pleasure quarter with assistant curator of Japanese art, Yuki Morishima. A perfect complement to Seduction: Japan’s Floating World, the talk will also address the unique perspective of an artist with intimate knowledge of modern geisha culture. You’ll also learn about the rigorous artistic training of geisha—an early influence on Aoki’s musical development. This event is part of our Thursday Nights series, when admission is just $5 after 5 PM.


Other Events in March:
FREE guided tours
3/1 - Yoga Flow
3/15 - Family Fun Day

For Members

Member Appreciation Days
Fri, Mar 6 & Sat, Mar 7, 10 AM–5 PM

We sure are grateful for our members and to show our appreciation, we want to lavish you with some extra perks! On Fri and Sat, double your discount and take 20% off your museum store purchases. We’ll even be open an hour early (9 AM) on Sat, so indulge in retail therapy before we’re open to the public. Thanks for making everything possible through your membership support.

Morning Viewing Hours
Sat, Mar 7, 9–11 AM

Hey morning risers, this is your chance to beat the crowds and take a closer look at Seduction: Japan’s Floating World and The Printer’s Eye.  The early bird gets the worm not just with art, but with a bagel and a cup of coffee (first come, first served). No reservation required.

Preview Lunch
Mon, Mar 23, 11:30 AM–1:30 PM
Open to Patron members and above

Go behind the scenes during this special preview of the year ahead with presentations by Dr. Laura Allen, curator of Japanese Art, Dr. Natasha Reichle, associate curator of Southeast Asian Art, and Dr. Kathy Gillis, head of conservation. Contact the Membership Office at 415.581.3740 or members@asianart.org to RSVP at your earliest convenience as space is limited.

Members Welcome Seduction

We had a blast celebrating with you at our Seduction opening reception and public party. Take a peek at the collection of images from our festive photo booth gallery and download your favorite pic. We hope you’ll come back soon for a closer look at Seduction and The Printer’s Eye. We have FREE audio guides (originally $4) just for you.

Recommended For You: All Aboard: A Celebration of Walt's Trains
Now through Mar 15
Walt Disney Museum: 104 Montgomery St, SF

From Marceline to the Magic Kingdom, Walt Disney’s fascination with trains influenced his personal life and work. Explore Walt’s railroad journey with more than 200 artifacts, archival video, vintage photographs, and working model trains.

View this special exhibition for FREE by using your reciprocal benefits. Not a Premium Member? Upgrade online, call 415.581.3740, or stop by the Member Desk to receive free admission to 800 museums nationwide!

Our Recommendations

Annual Society for Asian Art Book Sale
Fri, Mar 13, 1–4 PM
FREE with admission

Bibliophiles rejoice! This is a must for book lovers and/or bargain hounds. Join the Society for Asian Art (SAA) for their annual book sale. Benefitting the museum's library, the book sale will feature 3,000 to 4,000 books, 95% of them from Asia. Rare collector items, special interest books and more will be available at irresistible prices.

Special Offers

CAAMFest 2015
Thurs, Mar 12 9:00 PM

CAAMFest is the largest Asian American film festival in North America that celebrates the richness and diversity of Asian American storytelling in film, music and food. The Asian Art Museum will host the Opening Night Gala on Thurs, Mar 12. Partake in savories and sweets created by some of the Bay Area's finest food purveyors such as Sol Food and Socola Chocolatier. Grab a signature Remy Martin cocktail and get down to beads by local DJs in Samsung Hall. Receive $2 off tickets by using promo code AAMCAAM15 when purchasing tickets at www.caamfest.com.


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

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Seduction: Japan's Floating World | The John C. Weber Collection was organized by the Asian Art Museum. Presentation is made possible with the generous support of Hiro Ogawa, Atsuhiko and Ina Goodwin Tateuchi Foundation, The Henri and Tomoye Takahashi Charitable Foundation, The Akiko Yamazaki and Jerry Yang Fund for Excellence in Exhibitions and Presentations, Anne and Timothy Kahn, and Rhoda and Richard Mesker. Media sponsors: ABC7, SF Media Co., KQED, and San Francisco magazine. The Printer's Eye: Ukiyo-e from the Grabhorn Collection was organized by the Asian Art Museum. Presentation is made possible with the generous support of The Bernard Osher Foundation and The Akiko Yamazaki and Jerry Yang Fund for Excellence in Exhibitions and Presentations. Tradition on Fire: Contemporary Japanese Ceramics from the Paul and Kathy Bissinger 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. Woven Luxuries: Indian, Persian, and Turkish Velvets from the Indictor Collection 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. The SFUSD Arts Festival at the Asian Art Museum is generously supported by Wells Fargo. Lead funding for the Asian Art Museum's Thursday Night Programs is provided by Wells Fargo. Support for the Asian Art Museum's Public Programs is provided by The Charles D. and Frances K. Field Fund, William Randolph Hearst Foundation, The Sato Foundation, The Joseph & Mercedes McMicking Foundation, Robert & Toni Bader Charitable Foundation, Dodge & Cox, and The Morrison & Foerster Foundation.

Courtesan in her boudoir (detail), approx. 1818–1825, by Utagawa Toyokuni (Japanese, 1769–1825). Hanging scroll; ink and colors on silk. John C. Weber Collection. Image © John Bigelow Taylor.

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