In Search of the Global Impact of Asian Aesthetics on American Art and Material Culture

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Vimalin Rujivacharakul, Department of Art History, University of Delaware, Newark, DE
This project is co-directed by Vimalin Rujivacharakul (Department of Art History, University of Delaware) and J.Ritchie Garrison (Winterthur Program in American Material Culture, University of Delaware). The following videos are from the events taken place at Winterthur Museum, Garden and Library, October 12-14, 2018. ( How do design ideas, patterns, and aesthetics travel across the globe, even when objects themselves do not? This project’s question grew out of a string of provocative inquiries that emerged following exhibitions and recent projects that our alumni and faculty members of the University of Delaware have worked on over the past 10 years (Collecting China [UD-Winterthur, DE], Asia in Amsterdam [PEM, MA], Made for the Americas [MFA Boston, MA], among others). While existing scholarship has recognized the global circulation of objects, artistic forms in the American field sometimes have less to do with the mobility of actual objects from Asia than with translations of Asian aesthetic influences that create new forms in new regions. This project therefore explores ideas about transcultural circulation beyond the concept of objects as commodities, by urging researchers to collaboratively study ideas and influences, across time and space, which have inspired, integrated, and re-generated new aesthetics in and beyond America. “Asia” and “America” are taken in this project as pointers to encourage a mapping of global and multi-directional flow of aesthetics and aesthetic translation, not merely an exchange between Asia and North America. Our long-term goal is to generate a multi-level investigation that comprehensively encompasses Asia, Europe, the Americas and other related world regions into the study of American art and material culture.
Presentation video (no. 8) for the Team Cloth session is not available.