Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Fair's Fair

So today wrapped up the Ulaanbaatar Art Fair.  This was an event I stumbled onto somewhat haphazardly - I found a copy of "That's UB" magazine at BD's Mongolian Grill when I went back there, and it listed the art fair...it listed it for the wrong weekend, but in the end I got the right information and a friend and I went to see it before slaving over our stoves for that day's feast in honor of the Canadians' Thanksgiving.
 It was held in the fairly opulent Zanabazar Art Museum.  Zanabazar (aka, the Michaelangelo of the Steppes) might just be the most famous artist in all of Mongolia.  He was a statesman and holy man, and was sent as a teenager to study with the Dalai Lama in Tibet (this would have been a few incarnations back), so as you might guess, the museum features historic and religious Mongolian work, including sculptures by the man himself.
And that was great and all, but we had actually come to see the art fair (there is a side gallery at the museum - according to Lonely Planet this is called the Red Ger Art Gallery.  The art in the show was nice, and there were some really cool pieces of art, including some felted pieces.  But...don't take this the wrong way...but I was a little underwhelmed.  See, my hometown Kansas City plays host to 3 art fairs a year (or at least they used to), and each one was big.  These fairs were all held outdoors and included sculpture, painting, photography...you name it, they had it.  I shouldn't have compared.  I know I ain't in Kansas anymore, Toto, and what they had was definitely quality, but there are SO many people selling their art out of folders on the streets that I guess I was just expecting quantity to go along with it.  Selfish, I know.  But I did enjoy it, and my friend got some good ideas for a field trip for her class, so it was a Sunday morning well spent (even if I DID ditch church).

1 comment:

  1. Hi Becky,

    Michelangelo of Steppes??? he he he. Where did you hear that from?
    Yeah, I know our art galleries are not that big. But if you are really into arts there is a place not far from US Embassy that all the artists sit and each have their own gallery and sells their arts directly. Kind of a small mall or something. at least it is much bigger than Zanabazar gallery. It was there until several years ago. You might wanna try.

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