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Posted inArt

The Many Comic Faces of Tibet

Something about Tibet has always seemed very mysterious to the West. Maybe it’s the terrain of the towering Himalayas possibly inhabited by savage yetis, the legends of the heavenly Shangri-La, or the ancient traditions of Tibetan Buddhism embodied by the reincarnated Dalai Lama. All of these impressions, founded on fact or not, have naturally made for great comic book fodder, where the exotic and mystical image of Tibet fits in perfectly with superheroes and mad villains. The Rubin Museum of Art’s Hero, Villain, Yeti: Tibet in Comics is now presenting over 50 comics related to Tibet dating back to the 1940s.

Posted inArt

What Is So Asian About Asian Art Today?

MÉRIDA, MEXICO — Over the past two years planet art has born witness to a drastic metamorphosis. The mental apparition of “Asian Art,” inhabiting its blanket concept, was once as innocuous as Casper the friendly ghost. Westerners were at leisure to muse and amuse themselves with its mysteries and exoticisms, with the fleeting attentions of a visitor into another lord’s cabinet of curiosities.

Today our imaginations and anticipations have fed it to megalithic proportions. And the economic boom of contemporary art in the 21st Century continues to relentlessly close the gap between the world’s cultures of expression, to the point where the bedsheets of West and East have begun to rub up against one another — sometimes roughly. There is even talk of the voracious appetite of the Yellow Peril of Asian Art, positioning its markets and state-ordained “cultural industries” to consume planet art altogether.

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