Museum Musings: Asian Civilisations Museum Wins Best Design Exhibition At 2019 Global Fine Art Awards
The Asian Civilisations Museum (ACM) was awarded the Global Fine Art Awards’ (GFAA) Best Design Exhibition, for its first fashion-focused exhibition, Guo Pei: Chinese Art and Couture. The exquisite showcase, which spotlighted art through couture in a juxtaposition of masterpieces created centuries apart, emerged on top against internationally renowned institutions, with Denver Art Museum and the Dallas Museum of Art’s Dior: From Paris to the World (USA) attaining an Honorable Mention in the same category. Other notable institutions in the running included the Victoria and Albert Museum (UK), and Thyssen-Bornemisza National Museum (Spain).
Held in New York, the GFAA is the first annual award to recognise the world’s best curated art and design exhibitions and installations, and honours innovation and excellence in exhibition design, historical context, educational value and public appeal. This sixth edition saw exhibitions nominated across six continents, 27 countries and 74 cities. The Asian Civilisations Museum was the only Southeast Asian institution awarded this year.
Director of ACM and Peranakan Museum, Kennie Ting, says: “Guo Pei: Chinese Art and Couture marked ACM’s first special exhibition focused on fashion – and contemporary fashion, at that. We are very encouraged by its warm reception amongst visitors and critics in Singapore and from across the world. We thank Guo Pei and our local arts, culture, fashion, lifestyle and media communities for supporting us through this endeavour. The success of this exhibition suggests that our pivot towards decorative art, including contemporary decorative art, is off to a good start. The team and I will keep striving to break new ground in exploring fashion, design, craft, beauty and aesthetics from an Asian point of view, and to offer fresh perspectives on innovation in the space of tradition.”
Presented last June in collaboration with world famous Chinese couturière Guo Pei, Guo Pei: Chinese Art and Couture was one of the most visited exhibitions in the history of ACM. The special exhibition examined the relevance and impact of Chinese art, and how Chinese aesthetics and traditions are being reimagined for the world today. It also marked ACM’s momentous shift towards the decorative arts, as the Museum continues to present the best of human creativity and craftsmanship that explore cross-cultural, human connections.
Following the blockbuster design showcase, ACM officially made a permanent home for fashion on its third floor, collectively themed Materials and Design. Launched on 4th April 2020, the Museum’s new Fashion and Textiles and Jewellery permanent galleries complete ACM’s multi-year refresh, illustrating the interconnectedness of Asian traditions, and the best of Asian style and craftsmanship. The Fashion and Textiles gallery is the only permanent space in Singapore dedicated to fashion.