San Francisco’s Asian Art Museum today announced the appointment of Dr. Tianlong Jiao as the museum’s new curator of Chinese art, effective September 15, 2014. Serving as head of the museum’s acclaimed Chinese art department, Dr. Jiao will join associate curator of Chinese art Li He in executing advanced curatorial work, organizing special exhibitions and overseeing the care and academic interpretation of Chinese art belonging or lent to the museum.
“A scholar, archaeologist, curator and museum administrator with extensive experience in China and the U.S., Tianlong Jiao brings a unique combination of skills and expertise to his new role here,” said Jay Xu, director of the Asian Art Museum. “His knowledge of early Chinese art aligns well with the strength of the museum’s collection, and his established relationships in China should prove invaluable in facilitating important cultural exchanges. We welcome his intellectual rigor and his enthusiasm for fulfilling the museum’s vision to engage and inspire broad audiences.”
A specialist in Chinese archaeology and early Chinese art history, Dr. Jiao joins the Asian Art Museum after serving as the chief curator at the Hong Kong Maritime Museum, where he directed the museum’s collections, exhibitions, and education and public programs. Prior to that, he was chair of the anthropology department at the Bishop Museum in Honolulu, Hawaii. He has curated many international traveling exhibition projects, covering themes such as fine arts, maps, textiles, ethnology and archaeology. Working closely with scholars, community consultants, educators and designers, he played a key role in the multimillion dollar renovation of the Bishop Museum’s Pacific Hall.
“I am honored to join Dr. Jay Xu, Dr. Pedro Moura Carvalho and the curatorial team at the Asian Art Museum,” said Dr. Tianlong Jiao. “I look forward to working with the team in promoting the Chinese art and cultural programs at this world-renowned institution.”
Dr. Jiao holds a Ph.D. in anthropology from Harvard, an M.A. in archaeology from the graduate school of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences in Beijing, and a B.A. in archaeology from Beijing University. He was the recipient of the excellent teaching achievement prize at Harvard University and the U.S. 2007 Philip and Eugenia Cho award for outstanding scholarship.
Dr. Jiao has directed or participated in more than thirty archaeological excavations in China, and has also served as director of the Shandong Archaeology Team for the Institute of Archaeology at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences. He has lectured widely on Chinese archaeology and early Chinese art history and has published extensively in a variety of fields in both China and the West. He has authored or co-authored six books and more than seventy papers. Among his publications are The Neolithic of Southeast China (2007), A Short History of the Origins of Chinese Civilization (1998) and Style and Social Boundary in Bronze Age Southeast China (2010).