Central Asia

Unique Exhibition Showcases Works of Central Asian Artists

“Unique Exhibition Showcases Works of Central Asian Artists”

by RUFIYA OSPANOVA via “The Astana Times

SINGAPORE – “New Silk Roads: Painting Beyond Borders,” the first exhibition of Central Asian artists, was showcased April 21 in Icon Gallery here. The event was organised by ENE Central Asian Arts with the support of the Kazakh Embassy in Singapore and Lassale Singapore University of Art.


The exhibition showed 37 works, including those of artists from Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan. Paintings and abstract compositions by Central Asian artists generated great interest among the many visitors. 

Kazakhstan demonstrated paintings of the Amulet series by the nation’s renowned artist Leyla Mahat. In her works, Mahat tells about the role of amulets in the daily life of nomads, which were used not only as decoration but also as charms from the evil eye.

Amulet paintings recreate ancient jewellery uncovered in archaeological excavations and reconstructed by Kazakh scientists and her images relive the work of archaeologist Zeinolla Samashev. 


Artist, archaeologist and artisan are all connected through the materiality of the gold ornaments and their contemporary artistic representations, as well as by the land once inhabited by the ancient peoples which now forms their burial place and the physical basis of the modern state. The choice of depicting jewellery, the wearing of which was an aristocratic prerogative, is also suggestive of the lineage which the artist claims as validation for the modern state. The appeals to the forces of history and heredity are perhaps nowhere better illustrated than in “Amulet and Colour” (2014), where their potency seems to glow red-hot, their vividness embodying itself in the profuse viscosity of paint, tactile and Medusa-like in its writhing. 

According to the organisers, such exhibitions in general allow representatives of Central Asian countries not only to learn more about the historical values of each other, but in particular help to strengthen ties between Kazakhstan and Singapore.  . . .


Coming Exhibition: Collecting Asian Objects in Colonial Korea, 1910-1945

“Collecting Asian Objects in Colonial Korea, 1910-1945”

Lady riding a horse, Astana Tombs, Turpan, 7th-8th century, color on clay, 38.5cm high.


National Museum of Korea

When: Oct. 28, 2014 – January 11, 2015 (Hours Vary)


National Museum of Korea
137, Seoubinggo-ro (168-6, Yongsan-dong 6-ga)
Yongsan-gu, Seoul 140-797

More Information: Here and Here.

In the late nineteenth century, as Western powers expanded deeper into Asia, the cultures of the East were eagerly commodified to satisfy westerners’ penchant for the exotic. Tomb thefts were just as prevalent as legitimate archeological investigations. With the concurrent boom in the antique market, the acquired artifacts were smoothly incorporated into the category of ‘fine arts’.
At the center of this movement were museums established through the emergence of modern states. Korea, however, was unable to play a leading role in the current of this era. At the time, Japan regarded itself as the only civilized country in Asia, and thus the only country capable of leading the primitive East into modern civilization. Based on this belief, Japan re-interpreted the histories of other Asian countries from its own perspective and attempted to promote these historical revisions through museums.
Notably, the so-called cultural assets collected in museums at that time originated from all across Asia, ranging from Central Asia to China and Japan. Why did Japan collect cultural assets from other Asian countries under its colonial rule? This exhibition represents the first step of a long journey that will yield both a question and a corresponding answer about our museum’s collection of Asian cultural assets and its origins.

Coming Exhibitions: Afghanistan – Hidden Treasures from the National Museum, Kabul

Coming Exhibitions:

Afghanistan – Hidden Treasures from the National Museum, Kabul

Afghanistan was at the heart of the Silk Road, the trading route traveled by Alexander the Great, Genghis Khan and Marco Polo, linking ancient Iran, Central Asia, India and China, and the more distant cultures of Greece and Rome.Visiting Australia for the first time, this exhibition – with more than 230 priceless treasures, some thousands of years old – offers a rare opportunity to discover the surprising, untold story of the long and extraordinarily rich culture that is Afghanistan. . . .”

Date:  March 7, 2014 – June 1, 2014

  • $10.00 adult
  • $8.00 concession
  • $7.00 member
  • $28.00 family (2 adults + up to 3 children)
Venue: Major exhibition gallery of the Art Gallery of New South Wales.  
Art Gallery Rd, The Domain 2000
Sydney, Australia
You can find more information here.