Symposium - Pan Gongkai: Withered Lotus Cast in Iron

Julia Andrews, Ron Burnett, Pan Gongkai, Anthony Jones, Martin Powers, Joseph Tanke, and Jo-Anne Birnie Danzker

Sunday, October 5, 2014
10:00am – 5:00 pm

Frye Auditorium

Join the Frye Art Museum for a day of scholarly presentations and discussion on ink painting and the art practice of Pan Gongkai. Presented in conjunction with Pan Gongkai: Withered Lotus Cast in Iron, the first museum exhibition in the United States of this distinguished Chinese artist. Symposium participants include internationally renowned scholars Julia Andrews, Ron Burnett, Anthony Jones, Martin Powers, Joseph Tanke, and Jo-Anne Birnie Danzker.

$10 registration includes coffee, pastries, and light buffet lunch.

10 am
Jo-Anne Birnie Danzker, Director, Frye Art Museum

10:30-11:30 am
Pan Gongkai: A Context for His Art and Life
Anthony Jones, Chancellor and President Emeritus, School of the Art Institute of Chicago

11:30-12:30 pm
Broken Blossoms: Pan Gongkai on the Boundaries of Contemporary Art
Joseph Tanke, Associate Professor, Department of Philosophy University of Hawaii

12:30-1:30 pm
Lunch break

1:30-2:30 pm
Art and Autonomy in China: A Historical Perspective
Martin Powers, Sally Michelson Davidson Professor of Chinese Arts and Cultures, University of Michigan

2:30-3:30 pm
The Epigraphic Instinct and the Ink Painting of Pan Gongkai
Julia Andrews, Professor Department of History of Art Ohio State University

3:30-4:30 pm
Pan Gongkai in Response
Julia Andrews, Anthony Jones, Pan Gongkai, Martin Powers, Joseph Tanke, and Ron Burnett, President and Vice-Chancellor, Emily Carr University of Art and Design
Moderator: Jo-Anne Birnie Danzker


Julia Andrews Professor, Department of History of Art, Ohio State University. Andrews received her BA in Asian History from Brown University, MA in Art History from Harvard, and PhD from the University of California, Berkeley, where she studied with the late James Cahill. In 1996 her first book, Painters and Politics in the People’s Republic of China, 1949–1979, won the Levenson prize and in 2013 her book Art of Modern China, co-authored with Kuiyi Shen, won the Humanities book prize of the International Convention of Asia Scholars.

Jo-Anne Birnie Danzker Director of the Frye Art Museum in Seattle and former Director of the Museum Villa Stuck, Munich, and Vancouver Art Gallery in Canada. Birnie Danzker has published extensively on contemporary and historical art, with a special emphasis on the Modern. Among her publications are Shanghai Modern: 1919–1945 and Mark Tobey and Teng Baiye: Seattle|Shanghai. In 1985 she led a cultural delegation to China and in 2012 was a participant in the US-China Forum on the Arts and Culture in Beijing.

Ron Burnett President and Vice-Chancellor of Emily Carr University of Art and Design in Vancouver, Canada. Burnett was awarded the Order of Canada in 2013. The author of more than 150 essays and articles, he was the editor-in-chief and founder of Ciné-Tracts magazine, a film and cultural studies journal, and author of Cultures of Vision: Images, Media and the Imaginary; Explorations in Film Theory; and How Images Think. Burnett is a photographer, videomaker, and filmmaker.

Anthony Jones Chancellor of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and former Director of the Glasgow School of Art and Royal College of Art, London. Jones is Honorary Director of the Osaka University of the Arts and Honorary Professor of the University of Wales, and was conferred the Austrian Cross for services to European education. The recipient of four Honorary Doctorates, Jones received the Award of Distinction of the American National Council of Arts Administrators, and was appointed Senior Fellow of the Royal College of Art, London, and Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts.

Pan Gongkai President of Central Academy of Fine Arts, Beijing (2001–14), and former President of the China Academy of Art, Hangzhou (1996–2001). A member of one of China’s most illustrious artistic families, Pan Gongkai (b. 1947) has played a decisive role in the intellectual life of his nation. He has furthered international dialogue between philosophers, art historians, artists, and theoreticians on fundamental questions of culture, identity, and representation, and written extensively on the boundaries and distinctions between Western and Chinese art. A strong proponent of the tradition of Chinese brush painting, he has been, at the same time, one of the most ardent experimenters with its forms. Pan represented China at the Venice Biennale in 2011.

Martin Powers Sally Michelson Davidson Professor of Chinese Arts and Cultures at the University of Michigan, and former Director of the Center for Chinese Studies. He authored two books which both received the Levenson Prize for best in pre-twentieth-century Chinese studies. Powers is currently completing a book on the English Enlightenment response to the political thought of early modern China and is co-editing the Blackwell Companion to Chinese Art.

Joseph Tanke Associate Professor of Philosophy at the University of Hawaii, Manoa. Tanke is the author of Foucault’s Philosophy of Art: A Genealogy of Modernity and Jacques Rancière: An Introduction—Philosophy, Politics, Aesthetics. He recently completed The Bloomsbury Anthology of Aesthetics, a textbook for courses on the theory and philosophy of art. He is the editor of the book series Global Aesthetic Research.

Pan Gongkai. Withered Lotus Cast in Iron (detail). Ink on Paper. 70 7/8 x 590 9/16 in. Courtesy of the artist.


Check in and entry begins at 10 am. Tickets will be available at will call.

Ticket holders are allowed entry at any time throughout the event. Please note that entry at any time is subject to the capacity of the auditorium not being exceeded. Entry is on first come, first served basis.

Standby Policy

In the event that all tickets have been reserved, a standby entry will take place on a first come, first served basis beginning thirty minutes after the start of the program.

Cancellation: The Frye Art Museum reserves the right to cancel any program. In the event of program cancellation, all ticket holders will be informed via email.

Questions? or 206 432 8200.