AAA’s collection is a dynamic, growing body of material intended to reflect contemporary artistic practice and developments of Asia within an international context. Built through a systematic programme of research and information gathering, AAA is widely regarded as one of the most valuable public collections of primary and secondary source material about contemporary art in Asia.
Built of 85% material donations, the Archive is a community effort that has grown from a single bookshelf in 2000 to a collection of over 34,000 records, comprised of hundreds of thousands of physical and digital items. It includes books and catalogues, audiovisual material, rare periodicals, primary source material, and individual personal archives.
This is just the beginning. The Collection Online is a continuously growing digital archive of primary source material culled by individual practitioners and researchers in cities across Asia. The initial launch represents a small portion (3,000 items) of AAA’s repository of 300,000 digital images, correspondences, artists’ personal documents, and streaming audio and video of performance art, artist talks, lectures, and other art events, with material being added as it becomes available. The Collection Online currently includes material from several Special Collections:the Zhang Xiaogang Archive, the Mao Xuhui Archive, and the Zhang Peili Archive, each part of the Research Project Materials of the Future: Documenting Contemporary Chinese Art from 1980-1990; The Chabet Archive: Covering Fifty Years of the Artist’s Materials; and Another Life: The Digitised Personal Archive of Geeta Kapur and Vivan Sundaram, each of which can serve as micro-narratives within regional art histories.