Asia Forum for the Contemporary Art of Global Asias

2021- 2025


2023- 2025

The Bagri Foundation is excited to be the Sakti supporter of the Asia Forum for its continued research and core development from 2023-2025.

23 April 2022
at Fondazione Querini Stampalia, Venice, Italy, during the 59th Venice Biennale + online

Project description

The Bagri Foundation presents the Asia Forum for the Contemporary Art of Global Asias. Conceived by Annie Jael Kwan, the Asia Forum works with a council of international curators and researchers, Hammad Nasar, John Tain, and Ming Tiampo, in a sustained dialogue with contributors to navigate the key themes that have arisen in relation to contemporary artistic practices of Global Asias.

 The Asia Forum is a platform envisioned for discourse surrounding experimental art practices and research that produce hopeful new worlds beyond the North Atlantic. In 2021, it presented pre-events via digital gatherings in spring and fall, leading to an inaugural one-day programme at the historic Fondazione Querini Stampalia on 23 April 2022 that will highlight urgent themes in global circulation.

Its presence in Venice, during the opening weekend of the 59th Venice Biennial, will instigate exploration of pertinent themes in relation to the national pavilions and collateral events presenting the arts of Asia/s. It will provide the public with richer and deeper engagement with and understanding of the art of Asian artists represented in the Biennale, as well as the discursive conditions of its production.

Through its peripatetic platform of sustained dialogue and the exchange of knowledge – which will in 2021/22 be live streamed digitally via the exclusive media partner ArtReview – the Asia Forum seeks to nurture a community among diverse researchers, artists, curators and producers interested and invested in the arts of global Asias. The fostering of these professional relationships offer an opportunity to collectively re-think global conditions, and the building of inter-community, cross-border solidarities.

Asia Forum is made possible with thanks to the additional support of Something Human and is presented in partnership with ArtReview, Fondazione Querini Stampalia, IED – Istituto Europeo di Design, Ca’ Foscari Alumni, GAD – Giudecca Art District, School for Curatorial Studies Venice. With the patronage of the DVRI – Distretto Veneziano della Richerca e dell’Innovazione and Ca’ Foscari University of Venice.

2021 Pre-Events


14 May 2021 – Spring Digital Gathering

The first digital gathering presents a roundtable with protagonists who are leaders in their field: art historian and curator, Patrick Flores, anthropologist Anna Lowenhaupt Tsingand artists, Shilpa Gupta, Ho Tzu Nyen and Lantian Xie, followed by a working group for deeper dialogical engagement with raised propositions.

The event was live-streamed on Asia Forum’s exclusive media partner website, ArtReview. Watch the recordings here.

3 November 2021 – Fall Digital Gathering

The second digital gathering invites presentations by and conversations with artists Irwan Ahmet and Tita SalinaHo Rui An, and Lawrence Lek.

The event was live-streamed on Asia Forum’s exclusive media partner website, ArtReview. Watch the recordings here.

Working Council Biographies:

Annie Jael Kwan is an independent curator and researcher whose exhibition-making, programming, publication and teaching practice is located at the intersection of contemporary art, art history and cultural activism, with interest in archives, histories, feminist, queer and alternative knowledges, collective practices, and solidarity. She leads Asia-Art-Activism (AAA), a research network that has presented an active public programme of presentations, talks, workshops, mini-residences and festivals that challenge and complicate notions of ‘Asia’. She currently teaches Critical Studies at Central St Martins, University of the Arts, London, and co-teaches Writing and Curating at KASK, School of Art, in Gent, Belgium.

Hammad Nasar is a London-based curator, researcher and strategic advisor. He is presently Senior Research Fellow at the Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art, where he co-leads the ‘London, Asia’ project; Principal Research Fellow at the University of the Arts London, Decolonising Arts Institute; and co-curator of British Art Show 9 (2021-22). He was the inaugural Executive Director of the Stuart Hall Foundation, London (2018-19); Head of Research & Programmes at Asia Art Archive, Hong Kong (2012-16); and, co-founded (with Anita Dawood) the pioneering hybrid arts organisation, Green Cardamom, London (2004-12).

John Tain is Head of Research at Asia Art Archive, where he leads a team based in Hong Kong, New Delhi, and Shanghai. He has organized several exhibitions, among them Yasuhiro Ishimoto: Someday, Chicago (2018), “Out of Turn” at the Serendipity Arts Festival in Goa (2018) and “Women Make Art History” and “The Body Collective” during Art Basel Hong Kong (2018, 2019), and most recently, Crafting Communities (2020), which looks at the confluence of feminism, crafts, and social practice in the biennial series of Womanifesto events organized in Thailand from 1997 to 2008.  In 2019-20, he co-convened MAHASSA (Modern Art Histories in and across Africa, and South and Southeast Asia, 2019-2020), a collaboration with the Dhaka Art Summit and the Institute for Comparative Modernities at Cornell University.

Ming Tiampo is Professor of Art History, and co-director of the Centre for Transnational Cultural Analysis at Carleton University. She is interested in transcultural models and histories that provide new structures for understanding and reconfiguring the global. She has published on Japanese modernism, global modernisms, and diaspora. Tiampo is an associate member at ici Berlin, a member of the Hyundai Tate Research Centre: Transnational Advisory Board, a fellow at the Paul Mellon Centre for British Art on the London, Asia project,  a founding member of TrACE, the Transnational and Transcultural Arts and Culture Exchange network, and co-lead on its Worlding Public Cultures project.