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Exhibition Schedule

Press Release

Exquisite Nature: 20 Masterpieces of Chinese Paintings (14th–18th c.)
March 3–Nov. 1, 2015

The Asian Art Museum presents 20 masterpieces of Chinese paintings from 14th to 18th centuries, representing the Yuan, Ming and Qing dynasties. The exhibition features several extremely rare works by the great masters of Chinese painting including Ni Zan (1301–1374). Broad in subject, style and geographical representation, the artworks show variations of themes such as landscape, bird-and-flower, country life and historical stories. Organized by the Asian Art Museum.

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

March 13–Nov. 1, 2015

Silk velvets have been preeminent luxury textiles in many parts of the Islamic world and Europe, especially from the 15th century onwards. They were often used for clothing and furnishings, such as carpets, spreads, bolsters, hangings, and exchanged as diplomatic gifts. The 11 textiles in this exhibition are selections from a private New York collection, providing a glimpse into the richness and diversity of Iranian, Indian and Turkish silk velvets. 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. Of special note are the two complete 17th-century carpets from India and Iran, each measuring nearly 6 by 4 feet and retaining not only their design elements but also their vibrant colors. These, along with nine other substantially sized textile fragments, show the cultural exchange between the Mughal, Safavid and Ottoman empires—linked by shifting ties of political, religious and economic rivalry. Organized by the Asian Art Museum.

Picturing Sound, Creating Mood
March 23–Nov. 22, 2015

Indian paintings are invitations to enter a multisensory world filled with sounds, smells, tastes and other perceptions evoking mood and stirring emotion. They intend to prompt the sensitive viewer (rasika) to be drawn into the artwork emotionally and feel its essence (rasa). Sound creates mood, and elements of sound—through hand gestures, jewelry, water pipes, birds and fountains—are present in Indian paintings. Picturing Sound, Creating Mood presents 12 paintings from north and central India from the 18th and 19th centuries, inviting visitors to listen to the paintings, enter their worlds, and embark on a journey. Organized by the Asian Art Museum.

Yoong Bae: Continuity and Pursuit
April 14–Dec. 13, 2015

Twenty years ago the Asian Art Museum presented 21 muted and meditative artworks by Korean American artist Yoong Bae (1928–1992). These pieces were then donated to the museum’s collection, representing some of the first truly modernist works acquired by the museum. Bae was known for blending Korean artistic traditions with modern Western art while reflecting the calmness and harmony of someone at peace in this space in between.
Now, for the first time in two decades, a focused selection of Bae’s paintings is on display in the Asian Art Museum’s Korean art galleries in Yoong Bae: Continuity and Pursuit. These eight representative pieces introduce the late artist’s hybridized approach to a new generation of visitors. Organized by the Asian Art Museum.

28 Chinese
June 5–Aug. 16, 2015

28 Chinese offers glimpses of contemporary Chinese art through a group of 28 artists, ranging from the up-and-coming Liu Wei, He Xiangyu and Xu Zhen to the internationally acclaimed Zhang Huan and Ai Weiwei. These artists have made a significant impact on the art world and expanded definitions of contemporary art in China. Featuring various forms—painting, installation, photography and new media—the exhibition reveals powerful responses to China today, as well as perspectives and attitudes towards tradition. Organized by the Rubell Family Collection/Contemporary Arts Foundation in Miami. Accompanied by a catalogue.

First Look: Collecting Contemporary at the Asian
Sept. 4–Oct. 11, 2015

For the first time, the Asian Art Museum presents a large-scale exhibition of more than 40 contemporary highlights from the museum’s collection in First Look: Collecting Contemporary at the Asian. Many on view for the first time, the artworks connect us to Asia’s histories and traditions with the immediacy of contemporary ideas. First Look features artworks by Bay Area favorites like Hung Liu as well as exciting debuts like Ahmed Mater’s Illumination Waqf. Visitors will also encounter new digital works from Japanese technologists teamLab, and large-scale paintings by Zhu Jinshi and Manuel Ocampo. The exhibition’s artworks are remarkable on their own, but they activate the rest of the museum’s collection in compelling new ways, infusing traditional themes, mediums and cultural history with the urgency of present-day ideas. Organized by the Asian Art Museum.

Looking East: How Japan Inspired Monet, Van Gogh, and Other Western Artists
Oct. 30, 2015–Feb. 7, 2016

Japan’s opening to international trade in the 1850s after centuries of self-imposed isolation set off a craze for all things Japanese among European and North American collectors, artists and designers. The phenomenon, dubbed japonisme by French writers, radically altered the course of Western art in the modern era. The Asian Art Museum delves into this sweeping development in the traveling exhibition Looking East: How Japan Inspired Monet, Van Gogh, and Other Western Artists. The exhibition features more than 170 works of paintings, prints, furniture and decorative arts drawn from the acclaimed collection of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. It traces the West’s growing interest in Japan, the collecting of Japanese objects, and the exploration of Japanese subject matter and styles. The works shown represent most of the major artistic movements of the late 19th and early 20th centuries with masterpieces by the great impressionist and post-impressionist painters Vincent van Gogh, Mary Cassatt, Edgar Degas, Paul Gaugin and Claude Monet, among others. Western paintings, prints and other objects are juxtaposed throughout the exhibition with artworks by celebrated Japanese masters including Kitagawa Utamaro, Utagawa Hiroshige, and Katsushika Hokusai. Organized by the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. Accompanied by a catalogue.

Asian Art Museum Collection Galleries

More than 2,500 extraordinary works from the museum’s renowned collection are displayed in the second- and third- floor galleries. Together these works constitute a comprehensive introduction to the major cultures of Asia. Immense Indian stone sculptures, intricately carved Chinese jades, vibrant Korean paintings, mystical Tibetan thangkas (ritual paintings on cloth), serene Cambodian Buddhas, richly decorated Islamic manuscripts, and colorful Japanese kimonos are just a few of the treasures on view. Every six months, the museum refreshes dozens of artworks from each geographic region with new selections from storage, providing visitors a unique perspective on each visit. These items are indicated with “Newly on View” tags on the labels.

Dates and exhibitions are subject to change. Please visit to confirm information.

The Asian Art Museum–Chong-Moon Lee Center for Asian Art and Culture is one of San Francisco's premier arts institutions and home to a world-renowned collection of more than 18,000 Asian art treasures spanning 6,000 years of history. Through rich art experiences centered on historic and contemporary artworks, the Asian Art Museum unlocks the past for visitors, bringing it to life while serving as a catalyst for new art, new creativity and new thinking.

Information: 415.581.3500 or

Location: 200 Larkin Street, San Francisco, CA 94102

Hours: The museum is open Tuesdays through Sundays from 10 AM to 5 PM, with extended hours during spring and summer until 9 PM. Closed Mondays, as well as New Year’s Day, Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day.

General Admission: FREE for museum members, $15 for adults, $10 for seniors (65+), college students with ID, and youths (13–17). FREE for children under 12 and SFUSD students with ID. General admission on Thursdays after 5 PM is $5 for all visitors (except those under 12, SFUSD students, and museum members, who are always admitted FREE). General admission is FREE to all on Target First Free Sundays (the first Sunday of every month). A surcharge may apply for admission to special exhibitions.

Access: The Asian Art Museum is wheelchair accessible. For more information regarding access: 415.581.3598; TDD: 415.861.2035.