Publication Launch: Asia Collections outside Asia – Questioning Artefacts, Cultures and Identities in the Museum

Date of event:   01/06/2021 − 01/06/2021

Format: Online webinar on ZOOM
Date: Tuesday 01 June 2021, 01:30pm – 03:30pm (London time)
Hosted by: The Royal Anthropological Institute, London, UK

With editors Dr Iside Carbone (RAI) and Dr Helen Wang (British Museum), chaired by Prof Elisabetta Colla (University of Lisbon).

With special issue contributors:

  • Dr Sofia Campos Lopes (Orient Museum, Lisbon);
  • Prof Donatella Failla (University of Genoa);
  • Dr Annette Loeseke (New York University, Berlin);
  • Prof Florencia Rodríguez Giavarini (Universidad del Salvador, Buenos Aires);
  • Dr Robin Ruizendaal (Taiyuan Asian Puppet Theatre Museum, Taipei);
  • Maria Sobotka (Freie Universität Berlin);
  • Dr Maria Szymańska-Ilnata (Asia and Pacific Museum, Warsaw);
  • Dr Karen Tam (artist and independent scholar, Montreal);
  • Dr Laura Vigo (Montreal Museum of Fine Arts).

Stemming from a lively and inspiring panel that took place during the RAI conference Art, Materiality and Representation (London, 2018), this open-access publication proposes an alternative approach to the conventional debate on the dispersal of Asian artworks and material culture in international collections. Whether in large scale comprehensive museums, or in smaller specialised museums, the challenges faced by these institutions in the display, definition and promotion of their Asia collections are broached over eleven articles.

By presenting some thought-provoking case studies about Asia collections in museums around the world, this publication highlights the importance of this shared cultural heritage in unravelling and understanding often complex cultural histories and identities. It also intends to pave the way to further activities aimed at making more visible and accessible these often-underestimated resources through networking and collaboration among museums, cultural institutions and research organisations.

This webinar will be held on Zoom, to register go here. For more information about the event, please visit the website here.


Image: Karen Tam’s artwork Opium Den Revisited (2018) as installed at the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts (Montreal, Canada).