The permanent exhibition “The Art of Asia” will be re-opened at the beginning of the summer season 2015.
The Art of Asia permanent exhibition – First floor of Kinský Palace
From the collections of the National Gallery in Prague
In 2010, the National Gallery in Prague‘s Collection of Oriental Art was transferred from Zbraslav Chateau to Kinský Palace on the Old Town Square. The curators of this Collection have mounted for the public a comprehensive exhibition of ancient and contemporary Asian art. Visitors can admire a display of superb art collections of ancient Chinese art, Buddhist sculpture, Tibetan votive pictures, known as thangkas, Islamic pottery and metalwork, Japanese woodblock prints and illustrated books, and early and modern Chinese painting.
“It has been our intention to present unique masterpieces both in their original social context and with regard to the history of art collecting in the Czech lands,“ says Dr. Markéta Hánová, Director of the Collection of Oriental Art. “The Collection of Oriental Art of the National Gallery in Prague administers more than thirteen thousand art objects from Japan, China, Korea, Tibet, South and Southeast Asia, the Islamic cultural region, and Africa. In terms of size and significance, it ranks among the most prominent such holdings in Central and Eastern Europe. The Collection’s particular importance lies in its documentation of the history of Asian art collecting in the Czech lands that begun around the mid-19th century and continues to the present. The country’s cultural exchange and contacts with regions of East Asia, and their study and presentation are among the crucial themes that the Collection’s specialists deal with,“ adds Hánová. Ever since it was founded in 1952, the Collection of Oriental Art has been systematically building its collections of Asian art under the guidance of Dr. Lubor Hájek, expanding them whenever possible by targeted purchases and transfers from other public institutions, as well as through bequests and donations from private collectors.
Patrik Hábl and Michal Rataj inspired by Chinese art and culture
As a continent of age-long tradition and culture, Asia never ceases to inspire – a fact visitors can appreciate in the area of the Kinský Palace’s main staircase that will feature a new monumental, hanging-scroll-type painting created by the contemporary Czech artist Patrik Hábl (b. 1975). In his artwork, Hábl seeks formal and symbolic influence in the tradition of Chinese scroll painting, which he regards as an important source of inspiration alluding to visions of imaginary landscapes. Inspired by sounds from the historical centre ofBeijing, the contemporary Czech composer Michal Rataj composed a musical collage that accompanies the painting. The music and painting mutually resonate, creating a peaceful and contemplative atmosphere before the entrance to the exhibition rooms that house original Asian art. Contemporary art thus enters into a dialogue with traditional Asian art.
The Collection of Oriental Art of the National Gallery in Prague is one of the round one hudred collections of Asian art that published their masterpices on the internationl web-page VCM - Virtual Collection of Masterpices. The link to the VCM pages are here: www.virtualcollectionofmasterpieces.com
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