Asia Week New York: March 9-18
For her, the main appeal of the event is “the opportunity to meet both established and new collectors and curators from around the world, many of whom are passionate about Japanese art and others who have only recently been captivated by Japanese woodblock prints and paintings”.
She also believes that the privacy afforded by having the dealers hosted in large galleries or hotel suites is important, allowing collectors anonymity and the time for extended conversations.
Mirviss notes that there has been a seismic shift in taste and collecting interest towards the modern and contemporary in art everywhere, and Asia is no exception. For her, the timing has been perfect, as she has been championing Japanese clay art of the 20th and 21st centuries for more than three decades.
“Working directly with seasoned, celebrated masters as well as emerging, brilliant young talents has been both gratifying and exciting. Together we have changed the collecting directions of numerous museums and countless collectors, ” she says.
This month Mirviss will present Timeless Elegance in Japanese Art: A Celebration of Forty Years to mark her 40th year in business. The show includes 20 works that have been created or specifically selected for the event by living artists long represented by the gallery as well as major, innovative paintings and famous ukiyo-e prints by important 18th and 19th century artists.
Ollemans (below right) started trading in Indian and south-east Asian jewellery in 1979 and has exhibited at AWNY since its inception in 2009. This year she will be travelling from London to show at Les Enluminures on East 73rd Street.
“After The International Asian Art Fair ended in 2008 a lot of us wanted to continue to work together in New York, so this dealerdriven event was established and it’s been a great success, ” she says.
“It is particularly successful in New York as the city puts a lot of energy behind the week, and with the support of the museums and the auctions it just works. All the finest Asian works of art are exhibited in dedicated shows, and behind them come all the great American collectors and museum curators who are very proactive in the US.”
She has witnessed the event grow and change a huge amount over the years and says: “As the import regulations have tightened up considerably in the US, inevitably it’s more difficult for antiquities dealers to exhibit, so we are seeing many of them being replaced by contemporary galleries, although of course this may be a response to changing tastes too.”
This year she will be showing a dedicated exhibition titled Ancient and Modern Design in Asian Jewels with pieces ranging from the 5th century BC to the 19th century.
“What I want to show is that so much traditional Asian jewellery has very cutting-edge, very modern design and antique pieces need not be old fashioned – they can be very contemporary and beautiful. Even if you aren’t interested in jewellery, it’s still worth seeing the show as the pieces work equally well as objects of decoration.”