SOAS University of London

School of Arts

Inaugural Event of the Alphawood Foundation funded Southeast Asian Art Programme

Borobudur, Java, Indonesia ©Pia Conti
Hiram W. Woodward and others

Date: 27 May 2014Time: 6:00 PM

Finishes: 27 May 2014Time: 8:30 PM

Venue: Brunei Gallery Room: Brunei Gallery Lecture Theatre and Foyle Gallery

Type of Event: Launch Event

Professor Gurharpal Singh, Dean of the Faculty of Arts and Humanities is pleased to invite you to celebrate Inaugural Event of the Alphawood Foundation funded Southeast Asian Art Academic Programme at SOAS. 

Please join us for a lecture by Hiram W. Woodward on a distinguished former SOAS scholar entitled ‘Looking Back at Britain's Pioneering Analyst of Early Southeast Asia: the Work of H.G. Quaritch Wales’. The event will be followed by a reception in the Brunei Suite and a view of the newly installed exhibition in the Foyle Special Collections Gallery ‘Arts of Southeast Asia in the SOAS Collection’ curated by Professor Anna Contadini.

The event is free but please register via

Hiram W. Woodward is one of the world’s leading art historians of Southeast Asia. From 1986 to 2003 he was curator of the renowned Griswold art collection in the Walter’s Art Museum in Baltimore, one of the two greatest collections of Southeast Asian art outside Cambodia and Thailand. His catalogue of the collection, published as The Sacred Sculpture of Thailand in 1997 by River Books, Bangkok, has achieved classic status and his 2003 handbook by Brill of Leiden, The Art and Architecture of Thailand, is now the standard work in the field. Woodward's work is celebrated for its sensitive examination of objects, its scrupulous documentation of their contexts and for its being bound together with an intellectual energy and imaginative verve that has produced a long series of discoveries and breakthrough interpretations.

The Arts of Southeast Asia in the SOAS Collection highlights the breadth of the region’s cultures as represented in the SOAS collections. Curated by Professor Anna Contadini (School of Arts), the exhibition constitutes an important further stage in the “Treasures of SOAS Project”, designed to highlight and encourage research of the SOAS collections. The objects displayed, many for the first time, have a wide chronological span, are diverse in nature, comprising manuscripts (written on bark, palm leaves, copper sheets and paper), textiles, sculptures, metalwork, ceramics and paintings, and reflect the variety of religions, cultures and languages to be found across this vast area. The objects come from Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar (Burma), the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam, and range in date from circa 1000 BCE to the twenty first century.

Organiser: Simone Green

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Contact Tel: 0207 898 4025