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Past Event

Saturday University: From the Land of the Morning Calm

May 14 2022

Seattle Asian Art Museum


10 AM – 11:30 AM

This lecture will be online only. There is a nominal charge ($5) for tickets and purchase is required for access. In June, we will return to a hybrid format.

A hundred years ago, art from the “Land of the Morning Calm”—a poetic name for Korea that was sometimes used in the US until the mid-twentieth century and is a loose translation of “Joseon,” Korea’s last historical dynasty (1392–1910)—was viewed as little more than an “interesting variation” on Chinese and Japanese art. in fact, in those early days, art from Korea was often mistakenly thought to be from China or Japan, a testament to its high quality. Today, by contrast, Korean art is recognized as an important component of East Asian art. Although related to Chinese and Japanese art, it nonetheless expresses a uniquely Korean aesthetic sensibility that distinguishes it from the art of its large and powerful neighbors.

In this lecture, Robert Mowry, curator emeritus at Harvard Art Museums and senior consultant at Christie’s, offers insights into the history of collecting Korean art in the US since the early twentieth century. Mowry will walk listeners through important American collectors and will divulge their contributions to the formation of Korean art collections in museums across the country.

Registration for this lecture is a two-step process. After you purchase a ticket, you will receive a confirmation email, which will include the Zoom registration link. Please click the link and fill out the Zoom registration form. Once you have completed this step, Zoom will send a link and a reminder to join the webinar. If you have any trouble with the registration process, please email us at In the event that we are unable to offer this program in person due to the ever-changing COVID-19 situation, we will transition to an online only format.



Saturday University: Connoisseurly Obsessions and Social Collecting


Saturday University: Charles Lang Freer

Saturday University lectures are organized by the Gardner Center for Asian Art and Ideas in collaboration with the Jackson School of International Studies at the University of Washington.
Foliate cup stand, 12th century, Korean, Stoneware with celadon glaze, 2 1/8 in. (5.4 cm), Diam.: 5 1/2 in., Thomas D. Stimson Memorial Collection, 48.58

Seattle Art Museum respectfully acknowledges that we are on Indigenous land, the traditional territories of the Coast Salish people. We honor our ongoing connection to these communities past, present, and future.

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