Traces of Words: Art and Calligraphy from Asia

About a five minute walk from the last set of classrooms at the University of British Columbia lies the Museum of Anthropology (MOA). The MOA is usually home to a renowned collection of First Nations artwork. But, this Thursday, the MOA will showcase a different part of the world with their new exhibit on Asia. Traces of Words: Art and Calligraphy from Asia is an explorative presentation about written word and its place in the art world—and it opens this week! Keep reading to see a sneak peek of the Museum of Anthropology’s newest exhibit! 

Traces of Words: Art and Calligraphy from Asia

THE EXHIBIT

Traces of Words features contemporary artwork and Islamic calligraphy from the Aga Khan Museum. It also boasts pieces from the museum’s Asian collection displayed in MOA’s Multiversity Galleries and a satellite exhibition at the Irving K. Barber Learning Centre. What you can expect to see among the silk, clay, woodblock, and digital projections are Qur’anic manuscripts, Sumerian cuneiform inscriptions, and Afghan graffiti.

Shamsia Hassani, What about the dead fish?, 2011 (Photo Courtesy of the Artist)

Shamsia Hassani, What about the dead fish?, 2011 (Photo Courtesy of the Artist)

THE CURATOR

The Traces of Words exhibit is expertly curated by the MOA Curator of Asia, Dr. Fuyubi Nakamura. Her most recently curated exhibit (In)visible: The Spiritual World of Taiwan through Contemporary Art was met with critical acclaim and her new exhibit promises similar success. When asked to describe her new exhibit Dr. Nakamura said,

“All creatures leave traces of themselves as they move through life; but words, whether spoken, written, imagined, or visualized, are traces unique to humans. Some words disappear, while others remain only in memory or leave physical traces as writing or text. These traces are the theme of the exhibition. In it we explore the powerful duality that emerges when the written word becomes a medium or canvas.”

Hisao Yugami, Mikazuki, Cresent, 2015 (Photo from the MOA Collection)

Hisao Yugami, Mikazuki, Cresent, 2015 (Photo from the MOA Collection)

THE ARTISTS

Five brilliant artists are showcased this coming week including Phaptawan Suwannakudt, Shamsia Hassani, Nortse, Kimura Tsubasa, and Yugami Hisao.

A trained mural painter from Thailand, Suwannakudt is a contemporary artist who has exhibited internationally in Chiang Mai, New York, and Sydney. Hassani, on the other hand, creates artwork that aims to colour over the sad memories of war. She is regarded as the first female graffiti artist from Afghanistan. From Lhahsa, is the mixed-media artist Nortse who experiments with traditional Tibetan art while also addressing the issues of the environment and identity. You can also find works by Osaka artist Tsubasa, who is trained in the traditional style of calligraphy and is known for herr massive installation Forest of Calligraphy at the Hyogo Prefectural Museum of Art. And last, but not least, is fellow Japanese calligraphy artist Hisao. His solo exhibitions include The Stains of Words and The Distance between Black and White.

Leaf from a Qur'an manuscript in Kufic script (Photo from the MOA Collection)

Leaf from a Qur’an manuscript in Kufic script (Photo from the MOA Collection)

With an immensely talented line-up of artists showcased at the MOA, Traces of Words is sure to inspire. Traces of Words: Art and Calligraphy from Asia celebrates Opening Night on May 11, 2017 at 7pm with free admission. But you can also see the exhibit until October 9, 2017. Visit their website to learn more!

 

 

 

Deanna Cheng

Deanna Cheng authored this blog post. Deanna is a team member of Super Sacha, loves the arts, culture and has an interest in International Relations.