The Asian Art Museum presents


Stirred up servings of Art, Performance & Music

Thu Nov 6, 2008
Asian Art Museum
5 to 9 pm
Art Organization, Arts, City, Fine Arts Museum, Museums, Organization


Get your monthly arts fix at the Asian Art Museum’s MATCHA series. Experience live performances, create art, embark on special tours of the galleries, mingle with friends over cocktails, or simply chill to the hip beats of DJs and musicians. Like the vibrant Japanese powdered green tea renowned for its richness and flavor, each MATCHA event has a refreshing and distinctive flair.

MATCHA is the perfect way to get your monthly arts and culture fix. Watch performances, stroll the galleries, create art, mingle over cocktails, enjoy music, and more.

November 6: Afghanistan!

The MATCHA season culminates in a grand finale with food, music, and dance of Afghanistan, in celebration of the highly anticipated, critically acclaimed special exhibition, Afghanistan: Hidden Treasures from the National Museum, Kabul. See what the press is saying about this "at once revelatory and heart-rending" show (New York Times).

The Bay Area's own Ballet Afsaneh, a dynamic ensemble whose repertory focuses on Silk Road regions in Central Asia, will perform colorful, kinetic traditional dance. See Afghanistan, go on a guided tour, make jewelry inspired by the ancient Bactrian gold on view, nibble on tasty bites, mingle with friends over cocktails from the cash bar, and much more.

This is 2008's last MATCHA. Let's end it with a bang!

event schedule

5-9 pm: Afghan food tastings
5-9 pm: Make your own jewelry
6:30-7:30 pm: The Afghan Heritage of Peace and Religious Tolerance: Celebrating one thousand years of Sufi literature. Scholar Robert Abdul Hayy Darr presents readings from the poetry of Hakim Sana'i, Abdullah Ansari, Jalaluddin Rumi, Rabia Balkhi, Khalilullah Khalili, and other great Sufis of Afghanistan. This is part of the Society for Asian Art First Thursday Lecture Series.
7:30 pm: Performance by Ballet Afsaneh
Time TBD: Docent conversations in the special exhibition Afghanistan: Hidden Treasures from the National Museum, Kabul
Ongoing: Free raffle drawing

Ballet Afsaneh

This critically acclaimed performance ensemble presents the dance, music and poetry of the historic Silk Road regions of Central Asia. Traditional repertory includes the folkloric and classical dances of Afghanistan, Iran, Tajikistan, Azerbaijan, Uzbekistan and India. Contemporary work melds ancient art forms with modern dance and theater in a unique, richly imagistic approach. Hailed by San Francisco dance critic Alan Ulrich as “The top tier of world dance in the Bay Area….” Ballet Afsaneh, the professional performance ensemble of the California nonprofit Afsaneh Art & Culture Society, was founded in 1986. The company produces an annual home season in the Bay Area, presents programs at major performing arts venues, museums, festivals, universities, schools, and community events, and tours internationally and in the US. Inspired by the diverse heritage of the legendary Silk Road, Afsaneh Art & Culture Society strives to promote positive visibility for the Central Asian community, preserve cultural assets and provide creative opportunities for future generations. Read more about Ballet Afsaneh at their website.

Robert Abdul Hayy Darr is an American convert to Islam and a translator of Persian literature. He is the author of The Spy of the Heart, a memoire of the years spent in Afghanistan in the 1980s. His most recent book is a translation of the Garden of Mystery by Mahmud Shabistari.

Featured artwork from the musuem's collection

a coin issued by the Indo-Greek king Apollodotus I Approx. 180-160 BCE Afghanistan, ancient region of Bactria; or Pakistan, ancient region of Gandhara Silver Acquisition made possible in part by the Society for Asian Art, F1999.38.7

Greek inscriptions, royal portraits, and images of Greek deities were standard features on coins issued by the Indo-Greek rulers of Central Asia and northern Afghanistan during the centuries just before the Common Era. Many Indo-Greek coins contained translations of the Greek into a local script and language on their reverse sides, indicating the great cultural diversity in this area of the ancient world.

More Info



  1. Asian Art Museum
    200 Larkin St, San Francisco, CA