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TAASA seminars

Wedding in Sumatra

Dr Chris Reid and Dr Safrina Thristiawati, Lampung, 2000

A series of lectures and seminars focusing on contemporary and historical Asian art, hosted by The Asian Arts Society of Australia and the Australian Centre of Asia Pacific Art, Queensland Art Gallery (QAG).

Upcoming Seminar

A Contemporary Traditional Wedding In Sumatra – From Scotland To Lampung
Presented by Chris Reid, Australian Museum
Saturday 2 August 2014, 2pm
Queensland Art Gallery Lecture Theatre
RSVP by Monday 28 July 2014 to Russell Storer at russell.storer@qagoma.qld.gov.au

Dr Chris Reid, Principle Research Scientist in the Entomology Department at the Australian Museum, and his Sumatran-born wife Evi (Dr Safrina Thristiawati, who gained her PhD in Demography from the Australian National University) will wear, show and talk about the garments and ceremonial textiles that featured at their wedding in Tanjung Karang, Lampung Sumatra, Indonesia, in 2000. The cultural values inherent in these traditional textiles will be considered, along with the vagaries of weather, personal insights into relationships, the risk of tangling headdresses and what the mother of the bride is expected to wear.

Originally from Scotland, Dr Reid first became interested in textiles through the gift of a Savunese cloth by an Indonesian student in 1990, an interest which has developed through collecting, travel and his marriage to Evi.  

Past Seminars and Lectures:


Unpacking my libary: Textile Tales from West Timor l Saturday 2 November 2013 l Seminar Room, Level 2, GOMA | With a mixture of narrative storytelling and information, Dr Ruth Hadlow explored the beautiful textiles and fascinating culture of West Timor. Presented by Dr Ruth Hadlow


17th Century Japanese Ceramics | Saturday 28 April 2012 | 2.30-3.30pm | QAG Lecture Theatre | A seminar exploring 17th Century Japanese ceramics, illustrated by pieces from public collections and the private collection of James MacKean.


Threads: Textiles seminar | Saturday 1 October 2011 | Cinema B, GOMA | A seminar which explored Contemporary Asian textiles in the exhibition ‘Threads: Contemporary textiles and the Social Fabric’ on display in the Gallery of Modern Art. Presented by: Mary Jose, Fabric of Life; Liz Williamson, Woven in Asia; and Ruth McDougall, Associate Curator, Asian and Pacific Art.

Laos and Indo-China Silver | Saturday 2 April 2011 | Presented by John and Marilyn Bee, QAG Lecture Theatre


Hmong Costume Art | Saturday 14 August 2010 | Presented by Maria Friend | QAG Lecture Theatre


Asian textiles | Saturday 26 September 2009
Queensland Art Gallery Lecture theatre | 1.00–4.00pm
1.00–1.15pm  Introduction
1.15–2.00pm  Marjorie Morris (traveller and textile collector in South-East and Central Asia): Central Asia — A Look at the Silk Road.
2.00–2.45pm  Dana McCown (curator, researcher and textile artist): Telia Rumal: an extraordinary but neglected group of textiles from South India.
2.45–4.00pm  Miranda Wallace (curator of the ‘Easton Pearson’ exhibition): Floortalk — Seeing the world through Easton Pearson’s fashion.

Ancient Chinese ceramics | Saturday 9 May 2009
Queensland Art Gallery Lecture theatre | 1.00–4.00pm
1.15–2.00pm  Baoping Li (Australian Postdoctoral Fellow, Centre for Microscopy and Microanalysis, University of Queensland): The archaeology and art history of Chinese ceramics and their cultural significance.
2.00–2.45pm  Bob Maher (former diplomat with extensive experience in the Far East): Unique song ceramics from a collector’s perspective.
3.00–3.45pm  Ruth McDougall (ACAPA): Introduction to and tour of the Queensland Art Gallery's Chinese ceramics collection.


A newly-revealed cache of antique pictorial silk textiles from the collection of the National Museum of Cambodia, Phnom Penh
| Saturday 18 October 2008 | Presented by Gill Green, TAASA Vice President and Honorary Associate at the Department of Art History and Film Studies, University of Sydney.

Textiles reveal much of the cultural history of the times in which they were prepared. These silk textiles were prepared in the traditional way in which Muslim women made their headscarves, by a resist-dye patterning method. But the patterning is manifestly non-traditional as they feature recognisable figurative motifs — animals, buildings, transport and mythical beings. This presentation focuses on the motifs' sources and then proposes a radical theory as to why and for whom they were created.