Joan Kee

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The seventy-two dimensions of the universe are represented in a single vertebrate body: a snake coiled in a continuous circle, biting its own tail. This symbol was etched within The Enigmatic Book of the Netherworld, on the second shrine of a young king, Amen-tut-ankh, who, before he ascended, was once called Tutankhaten—the living image of Aten, the sun. The circled snakes (one rings around an etching of the mummified pharaoh’s head, the other around the feet) depict a confluence of the gods Ra and Osiris, light and death eternally returning, swallowed and reborn and always encircling night into day. Some historians ...
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PublisherAsia Art Archive2012
Published in 2012, the e-journal’s inaugural issue, with contributions from over 40 scholars, critics, curators, and artists, addresses a theme that is central not only to AAA, but is one of the most vexed topics in recent years: the notion of the “contemporary in art,” with specificity to the contexts of Asia. Acknowledging Hal Foster and Terry Smith’s “Questionnaire on ‘The Contemporary’” in the Fall 2009 issue of October, as well as writings by John Clark and Joan Kee amongst others, we invited curators, artists, critics, and academics from Asia to contribute their thoughts on the topic. As an archive of ...

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