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... of The San Diego Museum of Art


As one of the oldest support councils of The San Diego Museum of Art the Asian Arts Council (AAC) has played a significant role in the history of the Museum. It exists to foster interest in the Museum’s Asian art collection and to support curatorial efforts. Our monthly meetings feature programs by visiting scholars chosen to expand our knowledge of our rich and varied Asian collection, an exhibition, artist, medium or historical period. We have an active study group promoting in depth study on a variety of topics. Organized trips include bus trips to other Southern California museums and travel to other cities to enjoy exhibitions of Asian interest. The Asian Arts Council affords members a rich experience of Asian art and a deeper appreciation of the objects in our permanent collection. Please join us!

Email the Asian Arts Council

Art of East Asia

Visible Vaults - galleries 9 - 10
Treasures from the Museum's vaults
may open July 1st!

The Museum’s Asian Art Collection

Of the holdings of the Museum’s permanent collection, almost 50% consists of Asian objects spanning many cultures, historical periods and media. The ongoing gallery rotations from the permanent collection, coupled with periodic special exhibitions, offer a rich, stimulating and diverse visual experience for members, visitors and guests.

Art of East Asia: The Galleries

Proudly opened in February, 2012. The Art of East Asia features works from Japan, China and Korea arranged in five distinctive gallery settings.

Art of East Asia docent tours.
Click here for schedule.

banner - South Asian, Southeast Asian and Persian Art
South Asian, Southeast Asian, and Persian Art

Paintings from the esteemed Edwin Binney 3rd Collection were featured in a new gallery that opened in January, 2017, in the back of the Museum's West Wing.

AAC General Meetings
& Lectures

Chairman:  Tom Dillon
Vice-Chairman:  Almiede "Allie" Arnell
Secretary:  Joanne Meredith
Treasurer: Mary Witztum 

These meetings feature distinguished speakers with expertise on a wide range of topics related to Asian art. We will be meeting on the last Thursday of the month at 1:00 p.m. on Zoom, with the exception of November and December when there are no meetings. In person meetings are free for AAC members and only $10 for Museum members and $12 for non-Museum members. Students may attend for $8.


Members receive a subscription to the monthly Asian Arts Council newsletter. To receive a free copy, email for information.

Giving Back

Covid-19 is here! Supporting the Museum has never been so important! The Asian Arts Council has played a significant role in the history of the Museum by providing funding in support of research, education and conservation. We support curatorial efforts by bringing scholars to the Museum who share their expertise with museum staff and with us at our monthly meetings. In addition to research and  education, ensuring the safety and the future of objects in the collection through conservation and restoration is a special focus of our annual membership renewal appeal and our conservation fund.  To learn more about how we do it and what we’ve done, visit the Giving Back page.


AAC Board

New Bylaws! The Board revised the 2011 Bylaws, giving voting rights to more chairs, and updating wording. Find the new Bylaws here!

The Board meets on the third Monday of each month via Zoom, except for January and February when the Board meets on the second Monday due to the holidays. There is no meeting in December. If you would like to visit the Board meeting, and you are a member, while there are Zoom meetings, please visit and get involved. Click here to send an email to request a Zoom invitation. The all-volunteer Board serves a two year term with Committee Chairs serving, hopefully, forever.  Meetings are open to members. For a list of current officers and committee chairs, click here. For more information, please contact us. To see a calendar, click the link.

Study Group

Japanese Ceramics is our topic for September! Asian ceramics is the theme for FY21, continuing where we left off in February, 2020. AAC members and Museum docents have an opportunity for in depth research on a theme chosen each year by the group. The Study Group meets on the third Monday of the month in the Museum’s Boardroom at 10:00 a.m. to hear presentations by its members. (The February meeting is held on the second Monday due to the Presidents Day holiday. There are no Study Group meetings in December and January). The 2019-2021 theme is Asian Ceramics. Check the Calendar page for the next meeting, or the Study Group web page for the schedule.


Dues for FY21 are due each July. We are grateful for those who continue to support the San Diego Museum of Art's Asian Art Council.

Curious about Asian Art?  Visit our membership page for the great benefits we offer. It’s $50 for an individual membership, $75 for a dual membership.