Asian and
Islamic Art Forum

Unknown artist (Neo-Assyrian, Mesopotamian), Tiglath-Pileser III Receiving Homage, 745/727 BC, Limestone relief carving. Founders Society Purchase, Ralph Harman Booth Bequest Fund. DIA No. 50.32

Past Programs Sponsored by Asian & Islamic Art Forum

Gudea of Lagash: Sumerian or 20th-Century Fake?
In 1982 the DIA acquired an iconic statuette of Gudea of Lagash. It was allegedly discovered in 1924 at Tello (Ancient Girsu, Iraq), a site subject to illegal excavations. A scholarly workshop will consider the possibility that the statuette might have come from such an excavation or is perhaps a fake made to satisfy a new market for Sumerian art. A smaller panel of discussants with present the major issues discussed in the workshop to the public.
April 3, 2011
Sponsored by the Asian & Islamic Art Forum and Mellon Foundation

Magical medicine is used in some traditional parts of the Islamic world to confront three principal causes of diseases: the evil eye, sorcery, and jinns (genies).
A manuscript found in Yemen contains rare images of kings from various jinn tribes that are more than mere illustrations. Anne Regourd, researcher at the French National Center for Scientific Research (CNRS), demonstrates that these images represent part of magical texts used for chasing away jinns in cases where individuals are thought to be possessed
March 18, 2011
Sponsored by the Asian & Islamic Art Forum
Modern Math in Medieval Islamic Architecture
It has long been thought that girih (geometric star-and-polygon) patterns in medieval Islamic architecture were conceived as a network of zig-zagging lines, drafted by designers with a straightedge and compass. Dr. Lu will show that by the year 1200, these patterns were reconceived as tessellations of a special set of equilateral polygons decorated with lines. These polygons enabled the creation, over time, of increasingly complex quasicrystalline tiling patterns, patterns that were not understood in the West until the 1970s. Please join Dr. Peter J. Lu, Post-doctoral Research Fellow, Department of Physics and SEAS, Harvard University, for this talk.
Sponsored by the Asian & Islamic Art Forum and the Henry Ford Community College-Art History & Arab Cultural Studies Program
AIAF Member Islamic Gallery Tour
Sunday, July 18, 2010
Dr. Heather Ecker, Curator of Islamic Art and Head of Department, The Arts of Asia and the Islamic World at the Detroit Institute of Arts

Commerce and Collection: Kütahya Ware at the Manoogian Museum

Friday, May 21, 2010; 6:30 p.m., Lecture Hall
Dr. Amy Landau, Assistant Curator in the Department of Manuscripts and Rare Books at the Walters Art Gallery in Baltimore


Asia in Aragón: Carpet Production in Late Medieval and Early Modern Spain
Friday, May 07, 2010; 6:30 PM, Lecture Hall
Dr. Heather Ecker is Curator of Islamic Art and Head of Department, The Arts of Asia and the Islamic World at the Detroit Institute of Arts.

The Sustainable Identity Quest. The Urban Environment, Society, Nature and Spirituality
Friday, March 12, 2010; 6:30 PM, Lecture Hall
Nader Ardalan, President, Ardalan Associates, is an architect of international recognition, awarded for his ecologically sensitive and culturally relevant design approach.

A Revolution in Taste: Chinese Blue-and-White Porcelains of the Yuan (1279-1368) and Ming (1368-1644) Dynasties
Thursday, December 3, 2009; 6:30 PM, DIA Lecture Hall
Dr. Robert Mowry, Alan J. Dworsky Curator of Chinese Art and Head of the Department of Asian Art, Arthur M. Sackler Museum

Yoga Revealed: Painting from the kingdom of Marwar-Jodhpur
Wednesday, October 21, 2009; 6:30, DIA Lecture Hall
Dr. Debra Diamond, Associate Curator of South and Southeast Asian Art, Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery, Smithsonian Institution

Speaking Volumes: The Falnama (Book of Omens) in Sixteenth and Seventeenth Century Iran and Turkey
Tuesday, May 19, 2009; 6:30 PM
Dr. Massumeh Farhad, Chief Curator and Curator of Islamic Art at the Freer Gallery of Art and the Arthur M. Sackler Gallery, Smithsonian Institution

Charles Lang Freer and Egypt
Sunday, May 3, 2009; 2 PM
Dr. Ann C. Gunter, Professor, Northwestern University and former curator of Ancient Near Eastern Art, Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery, Smithsonian Institution.

Discovering Islamic art in Khedivial Cairo: Some Early Collections and Displays
Friday, April 24, 2009; 6:30 PM
Dr. Mercedes Volait, Directeur de Recherche, Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, and Directeur, IN VISU Research Unit, Institute National d'Histoire de l'Art, Paris.

Including Dogs, Horses, Cows, Dalits, and Women: An Alternative Narrative of the Hindus
Sunday, November 16, 2008; 2 PM Lecture Hall, $20 per person
Dr. Wendy Doniger, Mircea Eliade Distinguished Service Professor of the History of Religions, University of Chicago.

Splendor and Intimacy: The Spectacular Private World of the Mughals
Thursday, October 2, 2008; 6:30 PM
Dr. Madhuvanti Ghose, Alsdorf Associate Curator of Indian, Southeast Asian, Himalayan and Islamic Art at the Art Institute of Chicago.

Artist's Lecture: Kenro Izu
Sunday, September 14, 2008; 2 PM
In conjunction with the exhibition Kenro Izu: Sacred Places.
Sponsored with The Forum for Prints, Drawings and Photographs, and the Japan-America Society.

Sesshu (1420-1506), Japan's Most Famous Zen Monk-Painter
Tuesday, May 13, 2008; 6:30-7-30 PM DIA Lecture Hall
Members Only Reception to Follow in Kresge Court
Dr. Yukio Lippit, Assistant Professor of Japanese Art, Harvard University.

Manipulating the Imaginary: A Trip to the Wonderland of Ancient Miniature Sculpture from Mesopotamia
Wednesday, April 30, 2008; 6:30-7-30 PM DIA Lecture Hall
Members Only Reception to Follow in Kresge Court.
Dr. Gregory Areshian, Research Associate and Adjunct Professor at the Cotsen Institute of Archaeology at UCLA.

Between Logos and Light: Depicting the Prophet Muhammad from 1300 to Today
Wednesday, March 19, 2008; 6:30-7-30 PM DIA Lecture Hall
Members Only Reception to Follow in Kresge Court
Dr. Christiane Gruber, Assistant Professor of Islamic Art and of Near Eastern Languages and Cultures, Indiana University at Bloomington.

The many lives of a South Indian goddess in the Detroit Institute of Arts
Friday, December 14, 2007; 6:30-7-30 PM DIA Lecture Hall
Members Only Reception to Follow in Kresge Court
Dr. Padma Kaimal, Associate Professor of Art and Art History and Robert Hung-Ngai Ho Associate Professor in Asian Studies, Colgate University.

The Shoso-in: Imperial aesthetics and art handling in 8th century Japan
Wednesday, September 5, 2007; 6:30-7-30 PM DIA Auditorium
Dr. Marshall Wu, Former Senior Curator of Asian Art, The University of Michigan Museum of Art

Hidden Educations: Exploring the DIA Collection with New Eyes: An Illustrated Lecture and Conversation
Wednesday, May 23, 2007; 6:30-7:30 pm Lecture Hall
7:30-8:30 pm Reception, Rivera Court
Dr. Roger Lipsey, Independent Scholar, New York

Photography, Islam, and Art: The Nineteenth Century and Now
Friday, May 4, 2007; 6:30-7:30 pm Lecture Hall
7:30-8:30 pm Reception, Kresge Court
Dr. Frederick Bohrer, Associate Professor of Art, Hood College, Frederick, Maryland

Special Lectures on Photography: Photography in Japanese Culture
Wednesday, April 25, 2007; 6:30-7:30 pm Lecture, Crystal Gallery
7:30-8:30 pm Reception, Crystal Gallery
Dr. Anne Tucker, Gus and Lyndall Wortham Curator of Photography, Museum of Fine Arts, Houston

Symposium: The Art and Influence of the Turkish Carpet
Sunday, February 11, 2007; 1:00-5:00 pm, Lecture Hall
Reception to follow, Kresge Court
This event is a joint program between AIAF and the Turkish Cultural Foundation.
Dr. Jon Thompson, Beattie Fellow in the History of Carpets, Ashmolean Museum, University of Oxford
Dr. Walter Denny, Adjunct Professor of Middle Eastern Studies, University of Massachusetts at Amherst
Dr. Louise Mackie, Curator of Textiles and Islamic Art, The Cleveland Museum of Art
Dr. Esin Atil, Research Associate, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC

On the Origin of Cities in Mesopotamia: Recent Excavations at Tell Brak, Northeastern Syria
Friday, December 8, 2006; 6:30-7:30 pm Lecture Hall
7:30-8:30 pm Cash Bar, Great Hall
Dr. Geoff Emberling, Director, Oriental Institute Museum at the University of Chicago