Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Postscript: SAAM Showcases Asian Badassery

Buddhist Guardian Statues - not from SAAMThe trip to the SAAM was well worth it. The calligraphy was interesting mainly because of the descriptions more than the visual portion (interesting, but a whole room of writings I can't read can only have so much impact). I never knew that I had a favorite style of Chinese calligraphy, but now I can say that I'm a fan of the balanced running script form, although the formality of oracle bone script is captivating as well. In any case, it's all far more elegant than anything I've ever put to paper.

Top-billing is currently given to the
Orchid Pavilion Gathering exhibit, and the works there represent what one would expect, with watercolor paintings showing graceful scenes of tranquility from a gathering of scholars. While still engaging, the true highlight comes from the Discovering Buddhist Art pieces, with works of sculpture in a variety of media. Documenting the spread of Buddhism throughout Asia, the pieces work individually and in aggregate, showcasing both serenity and conflict within the belief system. My personal favorites were the guardian sculptures. Meant to ward off evil spirits from temples, the attention to detail was incredible.

Now if you'll excuse me, I'm off to rid my apartment of the evil spirits emanating from my trash can.


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