TAASA Review issues
The spiral of life - the tongue of the cloth (yan pala na hmali) - a mutual dialogue 2021, Yuma Taru, Atayal people, Taiwan b.1963, Ramie suspended from metal threads, 500 x 250cm (D), installed dimensions variable. Commissioned for APT10. Courtesy: The artist and Taiwan Indigenous Peoples Cultural Development Centre.
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We particularly focus on APT10 in this issue by presenting two articles on this much anticipated triennial exhibition at QAGOMA, Brisbane. Tarun Nagesh, Curatorial Manager of Asian & Pacific Art at QAGOMA leads with an article which offers an overview of the key themes and major components of this 10th edition of APT. Abigail Bernal reviews a range of works on show by First Nations artists and communities, whose vitality and relevance of artistic practice across Asia, the Pacific and Australia is celebrated in this APT. TAASA members will be looking forward to a planned trip to APT10 over the weekend of 2/3 April.
One major event which should be on everyone’s radar – another triennial, this time held in Perth - is the Indian Ocean Craft Triennial, now branded as IOTA21. It began life in 2018 and co-curator Maggie Baxter describes how they managed to overcome COVID related obstacles in 2021 to run a highly successful Festival with exhibitions and programs covering metropolitan and regional WA, attracting 20,000 visitors. It featured traditional craft production drawn from artists and communities in Australia and throughout Asia, northern and eastern Africa, all linked by the immense coastline of the Indian Ocean.
Quite a contrasting exhibition Wayfaring: photography in 1970s-80s Taiwan was held at the Australian National University’s Centre on China in the World gallery. Its co-curators Olivier Krischer and Shuxia Chen explain that the works on show reflect a period of significant social and political transition in Taiwan as it emerged from 38 years of martial law. They note that their selection of photographs, principally drawn from the National Taiwan Museum of Fine Arts (NTMOFA), did not aim to present a complete overview of photography in the period, but rather the sheer diversity of photographic practice at the time. The exhibition catalogue and online tour videos can be accessed via the China in the World website.
An exhibition which can currently be enjoyed is Clay Dynasty at the Powerhouse Museum, Sydney. This is a major survey of the development of Australian studio pottery and studio ceramics from 1960 to the present. Ceramics expert John Freeland’s article specifically focuses on the formative influence of East Asian ceramics on the growth of Australian studio pottery and ceramic movements from the late 1950s, identifying the major influences and figures and their continuing legacy. TAASA members in Sydney will be treated to a tour of this exhibition by John and the exhibition’s curator Eva Czernis-Ryl on 17 March.
Also on ceramics, the final exhibition covered in this issue is Pure form: Japanese sculptural ceramics, opening in May at the Art Gallery of South Australia - the first major exhibition in Australia to present the ceramics revolution that resulted in the birth of sculptural, non-utilitarian ceramics in post-war Japan. Russell Kelty, exhibition curator, describes how this innovative ceramic movement emerged and developed but points out that this exhibition will also present works by contemporary ceramicists who continue to explore the potential of clay, engaging with both tradition and innovation.
Coincidentally, two articles in this issue refer back to the 1920s. Marika Visziany departs from her more well-known archaeological work as head of the Kashgar Project to make some observations about the lives of women in Kashgar, as revealed in the charming water colours of Doris Skrine, painted in 1922-1924 while stationed in Kashgar as wife of the British Consul. These paintings, Marika Visziany notes, are particularly revealing in depicting women going about their daily lives in public, without full face and body coverings, dark clothing and male chaperones.
A 1928 set of four large porcelain panels of the Eight Immortals painted by artist Wang Qi, now in the collection of the Art Gallery of South Australia, is the subject of Yuexiu Shen’s article. It not only represents the pinnacle of Wang Qi’s artistic achievement but also, as Yuexiu Shen argues, a seminal moment when porcelain art in Jingdezhen was undergoing a modern transformation epitomized by Wang Qi’s bold choice of colour and techniques and the shift from anonymous craftsmen to individual artists.
So many TAASA members have served as volunteers in art institutions while living in various locations in Asia. A personal and insightful account is offered by Kerry Nguyen-Long of her experiences as a volunteer in a number of such institutions while resident in the Philippines for 20 years.
Finally, and with great sadness, we commemorate two notable members of the Asian art community. Ann MacArthur fondly remembers the role Yayoi Maloney played for over 10 years as resident tea master at the AGNSW. And we pay tribute to Peter Court, long-time member of TAASA and the NSW Textile Study Group in particular.
Table of contents
3 EDITORIAL - Josefa Green
4 APT10: NAVIGATING THE PAST AND WRITING NEW FUTURES - Tarun Nagesh
7 WEAVING WORLDS AND IMAGINING FUTURES: FIRST NATIONS ARTISTS AT APT10 - Abigail Bernal
9 IOTA21: CURIOSITY AND RITUALS OF THE EVERYDAY - Maggie Baxter
12 WAYFARING: PICTURING SELF AND SOCIETY AT THE END OF TAIWAN’S MARTIAL LAW - Olivier Krischer and Shuxia Chen
14 THE WOMEN OF KASHGAR: DORIS SKRINE’S WATER COLOURS - Marika Visziany
17 ADOPTION AND METAMORPHOSIS: SURVEYING EAST ASIAN INFLUENCE ON AUSTRALIAN CERAMICS AT THE POWERHOUSE’S CLAY DYNASTY - John Freeland
20 WHEN MULBERRY FIELDS BECOME OCEANS: THE EIGHT IMMORTALS, WANG QI, AND THE 1928 PORCELAIN INDUSTRY IN JINGDEZHEN - Yuexiu Shen
23 PURE FORM: JAPANESE SCULPTURAL CERAMICS AT AGSA - Russell Kelty
25 RECOLLECTIONS OF VOLUNTEERING IN THE PHILIPPINES - Kerry Nguyen-Long
26 10,000 BOWLS OF TEA: THE LEGACY OF YAYOI MALONEY (1942 - 2021) - Ann MacArthur
27 RECENT TAASA ACTIVITIES
29 TAASA MEMBERS’ DIARY: MARCH - MAY 2022
30 WHAT’S ON: MARCH - MAY 2022