Friday, January 02, 2009

Neither East Nor West

When I saw the title "Neither East Nor West," I found it to be something I can relate to. It is the title of the exhibit at the Asian Civilizations Museum in Singapore that is running through Feb 1. It is subtitled "Asians in Monochrome" — a very intriguing use of labels for the event, I thought.

The exhibit focuses on photos from the late 19th and early 20th centuries that were taken of Asians in London. The portraits feature Asians in elaborate dress, all decked out in their finery, making their presence felt on Bond Street. It is a fascinating look at an age gone by and the cross-cultural relationships that were going on during that era.

The exhibit features more than 50 portraits, 12 of them coming from G. R. Lambert & Co., one of Singapore's earliest studios. It is a great way to explore an era, whether your interest lies in the fashions, the photo technology and techniques, the people, or the relationships between them.

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