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Talk / Lecture

Fowler Talks: Provenance Research in Asian Arts

November 1, 2022 | 11:00AM - 12:00PM

Join Najiba H. Choudhury, collections information specialist & provenance researcher at the National Museum of Asian Art, to learn how scholars trace objects’ ownership histories. Glimpse the multifaceted ways objects enter museum collections and different methods, including archival and art historical research, used to establish provenance. You will hear about an archaeological expedition in West Asia and the sale of a Chinese ceramic in the U.S. during the tumultuous WWII period. This program complements the Fowler exhibition Particular Histories: Provenance Research in African Arts. Following her presentation, Choudhury will be joined by the Fowler’s exhibition curator, Carlee S. Forbes, for a discussion of the global markets on which Asian and African materials circulated, as well as approaches to provenance work in their respective fields.

Najiba H. Choudhury holds B.A. degrees in art history (with a focus on South Asian art) and economics from George Mason University, and a M.A. in art history from the University of Glasgow. Her research interests include Asian art collectors, dealers, early museum collections, and provenance research. Her article on Yamanaka & Co. and the U.S. seizure of the American collection during WWII was published in the Journal for Art Market Studies. She has a forthcoming essay on Carl W. Bishop and his acquisition of a Buddhist stele.

Fowler Talks
The Fowler is honored to be a convening place for conversations, lectures, and readings that explore the many ways art creates meaning and defines purpose for people across the globe.

Image credit: Vase of bottle shape with “garlic” mouth, China, Jiangxi province, Jingdezhen, Qing dynasty or possibly modern, Qianlong reign, 1736-1795, or possibly early 20th century; 17.2 x 9.5 cm (6 3/4 x 3 3/4 in); Freer Gallery of Art, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC: Purchase — Charles Lang Freer Endowment, F1954.127a-e

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