CONF: Showing-Telling-Seeing: Exhibiting South Asia in Britain 1900-Now
Organised by the Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art and Asia Art Archive, in collaboration with Tate Modern.
This symposium proposes that exhibitions provide challenging and provocative sites through which to think about artistic exchanges and the two-way traffic between Britain and South Asia. It interrogates the lenses through which artistic production in South Asia have been framed in Britain, and argues that these frames have often been fashioned in colonial times, but continue to shape the reception of the art of South Asia in the contemporary moment. We seek to explore the legacies of such framings, but also take the exhibition to be a site of transaction and transformation, and potentially disturbance and challenge, to the colonialist narrative of and for the art of South Asia.
This is the first event of London, Asia, a collaborative project organised by the Paul Mellon Centre and Asia Art Archive. This project posits London as a key, yet under-explored, site in the construction of art historical narratives in Asia, and examines its influence through the vehicles of exhibitions, patronage, art writing and art education. London, Asia will also reflect on the ways in which the growing field of modern and contemporary art history in Asia intersects with, and challenges, existing histories of British art. We are not proposing a comparative framework, but rather encouraging new perspectives on the entanglements, historic and contemporary, between London and Asia. As well as looking at examples of particular exhibitions, events, institutions, and individuals, this project will ask broader methodological questions about the ways in which the art histories of Britain and Asia have been, and are being, written, circulated, and negotiated.
Please note there are three conference venues:
1. Congress Centre, Invision Suite, 28 Great Russell Street, WC1B 3LS
2. The Paul Mellon Centre, 16 Bedford Square, WC1B 3JA
3. One Alfred Place, 1 Alfred Place, London, WC1E 7EB