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New World/Old World conference kickoff with Ann Waltner and Gaylord Schanilec

October 13, 2010IASEvents, | Conferences0

The 2010 Mid America Print Council Conference “New World/Old World” explores places where tradition and experimentation meet.  Between generations, media and technique, private studios and public events, printmakers increasingly embrace a mixture of practices from different sources.  As we enter a new decade of printmaking with an expansive mindset, we look for ways in which our practice finds a context in contemporary art by re-inventing tradition.

The conference opens with a viewing of “The Impossible Black Tulip,” the oldest surviving Chinese map to depict the Americas.  Kunyu wanguo quantu, or Map of the Ten Thousand Countries of the Earth (1602), is a xylograph (wood block print) on six scrolls of fine native paper, each scroll measuring approximately 1820 x 3650 mm (each panel is approximately 2 feet by 5.75 feet).  Recently exhibited at the Minneapolis Institute of Arts, the Ricci map, popularly called “The Impossible Black Tulip” because it is so rare, will be featured in an exhibition at the Bell Library, opening September 15, 2010: Matteo Ricci and the Jesuits in China.  The map will be viewable Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. during the MAPC conference, but on Wednesday night will be open until 9pm with remarks at 7:30pm by Ann Waltner and Gaylord Schanilec.  Ann Waltner is director of the Institute for Advanced Study and a professor of Ming History at the University of Minnesota and has worked extensively on the map and its creation.  Gaylord Schanilec is a local artist, engraver, and printmaker who spent the month of May with images of the map in order to engrave a large block (14 x 25 inches) of a section of the map for the Associates of the James Ford Bell Library.  A video of Schanilec working on the engraving can be seen here.

A Jesuit priest, Matteo Ricci arrived in China in 1583 and, with fellow Jesuit Michele Ruggieri, established the first Christian mission. In 1597, Ricci was named Superior or head of the entire Jesuit missionary effort in China. His world map is a true collaboration between the European scholars of the Jesuit mission and the Chinese scholars of the imperial court. Vivid descriptions of the continents, praise of the Chinese emperor, lunar charts, and scientific tables documenting the movement of the planets adorn the map, a unique representation of East-West relations in the early 17th-century.

This conference event is also co-sponsored by the following institutions:

The Imagine Fund and McKnight Foundation, The Mexican Consulate, The Scholarly Events Fund, The Minneapolis College of Art and Design, Wet Paint, and Blick Art Materials.

In addition, MAPC would like to acknowledge the volunteers from institutions across the Twin Cities and in Northfield for their tireless work on this exciting event!

Sponsored by: Institute for Advanced Study, University Libraries, College of Liberal Arts, Art

More information: http://www.lib.umn.edu/bell

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