Collectors' Choice


“While it is true that American collectors seem to have a voracious appetite for acquiring art, and it is fashionable these days to decry the aggressiveness of both collectors and museums, the fact remains that most private collections in America, unlike in most other countries, end up in public institutions where they are preserved for posterity and are accessible to all who are interested in art and culture. It is certainly a better way to get to know one another than by confrontation on a battlefield or through political oppression and subjugation.”

For Collectors’ Choice, Asia Society has invited thirteen of New York’s most renowned collectors of Asian art to present to the public some of their favorite works alongside selected objects from Asia Society’s Mr. and Mrs. John D. Rockefeller 3rd Collection. Unique in its focus on contemporary collectors and their motivations and passions for acquiring art, this exhibition gives a voice to distinctive collecting practices and explores how collections are shaped according to specific tastes or chance experiences.

The exhibition will feature approximately fifty extraordinary works of sculpture, ceramic, and painting from South, Southeast, and East Asia, and the Himalayas, ranging in date from the second through the eighteenth century.

Contributors to this presentation include: the Renee and Robert Beningson Family, Susan L. Beningson, Mary Griggs Burke, Amita and Purnendu Chatterjee, Robert Ellsworth, Ron Lawrence and Julie Goodale, Andrew and Denise Saul, and Jane and Leopold Swergold. In conjunction with these collectors, Collectors’ Choice is curated by Adriana Proser, Asia Society’s John H. Foster Curator of Traditional Asian Art in association with Kristy Phillips, Asia Society Museum Fellow.