From the Director
As I expand my horizons to encompass my new responsibilities as Executive Director of the Temple Theatre Foundation, I can’t help but be excited about the possibilities for our regional arts and cultural community. I have no doubt that we are on the cusp of something energizing for our City and our Great Lakes Bay Region. Our museum continues to reach out to our arts partners across the region and we’re working together to build a strong alliance that will most definitely strengthen our collective economic and educational impact.
March's Book: The Name of the Rose by Umbert Eco
Discuss the book and enjoy coffee with lead docent Eric Birkle
Tuesday, March 10 at 10am
Adopt a Work of Art
The Adopt a Work of Art program is an opportunity for individuals and businesses to Take Part in the Art through the sponsored support of objects in the Saginaw art Museum’s collection. Adoption of a piece can be a truly unique, meaningful and ongoing way to recognize friends, family and business associates, while at the same time supporting the Museum.
Highlights from the Collection
Unidentified Artist, Charger, 19th Century
The objective of the museum’s “Nature Observed, Recorded, Stylized, and Imagined” gallery is to represent the unision and cultural similarities seen in various civilizations around the world throughout history – specifically those that exist between the eastern and western hemispheres. However, the development of imagery, media, and creative processes unique to specific cultures is not to be understated. Chinese porcelain is perhaps the best example of a medium that had gone largely unknown in the western world until the establishment of extensive trade routes in the late 16th and early 17th centuries. Due to its rarity in the occident, porcelain quickly became a highly sought-after luxury good in western society. The blue and white color combination, one derived from traditional Chinese ceramics, would eventually be copied by westerners, but they did not succeed in perfecting the technique until the early 18th century. The traditional and iconic dragon, long-revered in eastern societies as a bringer of good fortune, is depicted encircling Charger (shown here), which dates from the 19th century. The name of the artist who created the work remains unknown, but it is believed to have originated during Japan’s Edo period (1603-1868). Charger exhibits perfectly the traditional blue and white color scheme seen in early Chinese ceramics – a visual liaison that emphasizes the long-extant cultural connection between Japan and its larger neighbor. The stylization of the dragons seen in Charger makes them somewhat difficult to discern as they emerge from an equally ornate and stylized background. Evoking a sense of movement and visual connection within the composition, swirling clouds and rising waves refer respectively to the spiritual and physical realms; no doubt a reference to the dragon’s purported nature in Japanese culture of flying back and forth between the heavens and the earth.