For ArtAsiaPacific’s first issue of 2016 we present Almanac XI, a compendium of the most significant art events of 2015 and a look ahead at what’s next, in 2016. In addition to spotlighting the 53 countries that constitute our active footprint, the Almanac extends to the rest of the world—wherever the artists of Asia, the Pacific and the Middle East work and are shown.
Now in its 11th edition, the Almanac has become a critical record of art ecosystems during a transformative time, closely following the people, institutions, organizations and businesses that shape the art world. Since embarking on the very first Almanac, there is no denying how the artistic landscape in many countries has changed, for better or worse.
The complex undertaking of compiling the Almanac is only made possible by the efforts of our editors and contributors. Gathering facts, figures and opinions that reflect the art world across the globe—such as in Bahrain, East Timor, Iran, Kyrgyzstan, Laos and Macau—requires a special kind of patience, persistence and perspicacity that can only be honed by vigorous trekking through galleries and institutions and poring through print and online sources.
We’ve also invited influential art-world figures to reflect on the major cultural events of 2015, including Joselina Cruz, director and curator of the Museum of Contemporary Art and Design, Manila; mixed-media artist Rashid Rana from Lahore; Tehran-based collector, curator and gallerist Nazila Noebashari; Cosmin Costinas, executive director and curator of Hong Kong’s nonprofit art space Para Site; and Mono-ha artist Kishio Suga from Japan.For the Five Plus One section, we have selected five artists who made a significant impact in 2015 and one who promises to do so in 2016, including Etel Adnan, Simon Denny, Yang Fudong, Dinh Q. Lê, Jitish Kallat and Maria Taniguchi. We have also picked the ten best gallery and museum shows of the year, and 12 of our favorite books.