A banner welcomes NY visitors and residents alike to take part in the festivities of New York's 2013 Asia Week. This year's Asia Week will take place from March 13 - 21, 2015. Image: Asia Week New York Association.

New York’s Ties to Asia Are a Work of Art

ASEAN China The Mekong

New York is about to kick off its seventh annual Asia Week from March 13-21. Seeking to “celebrate and promote Asian art in New York City,” New York’s Asia Week draws in specialists, artists, and collectors of Asian art from New York’s metropolitan area. Last year’s events drew a record 47 dealers and $200 million in sales, up from $175 million in 2013.

Asia Week will also mark the celebration of the 100th anniversary of New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Department of Asian Art. Originally founded in 1915 as the Department of Far Eastern Art, the department houses over 35,000 pieces from Asia. They range in age from the 3rd century BC to the modern day. The museum also celebrated its connections to Asia in February by hosting a press preview of its new exhibit “China: Through the Looking Glass.” That exhibit, held in partnership with the Anna Wintour Costume Center, is scheduled to run from May 7 – August 16, 2015, and will highlight the inspiration that Chinese art and culture has had on Western fashion.

February also saw the opening of the Asia Society’s new exhibition, “Buddhist Art of Myanmar.” Like the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Asia Society has sought to educate citizens in both Asia and the United States about one another through various fields, including art. Asia’s Society’s Myanmar exhibit is the first ever solo exhibition of Burmese Buddhist art in the West. The idea for the show was conceived during high-level talks held at the Asia Society between US and Burmese officials as Myanmar democratized in 2011. “Buddhist Art of Myanmar” will run from February 10-May 10, 2015 and is a window into Burmese culture during the country’s general elections in autumn.

Sarah Batiuk is the Event Coordinator and a Program Assistant at the East-West Center in Washington.