Skip to main content

Introduction to East Asian Visual Culture (NCTA online series)

Dai Butsu, Kōtoku-in, Kamakura, Japan. Hand-coloured albumen silver print by Adolfo Farsari, between 1885 and 1890.

Participants joined art historian Melanie King for a series of introductory workshops to East Asian visual culture. Each one-hour online session focused on a different aspect of art history and is intended for educators new to East Asian culture and art history and people looking for a refresher course.

Participants chose to attend one or more of the following sessions:

Thursday, October 19 – 4:30-5:30 pm (PST) – Introduction to Buddhist art
This session traced the emergence of the representation of the Buddha by examining the changing form across space and time. In addition to sculptural representation, we considered the development of temple complexes and other Buddhist pictorial representations across East Asia.

Thursday, October 26 – 4:30-5:30 pm (PST) – Introduction to the visual culture of Daoism and Confucianism
In this session, we considered the role Daoism and Confucianism played in visual culture by discussing the basic tenets of each tradition. This was applied to a close examination of related objects that aided in the understanding of Daoism and Confucianism.

Thursday, November 2 – 4:30-5:30 pm (PST) – Introduction to woodblock prints
This session traced the role woodblock prints played in the transmission of culture, religion, and knowledge across East Asia, beginning with the earliest Buddhist texts to the widely influential Japanese woodblock prints.

Thursday, November 9 – 4:30-5:30 pm (PST) – East meets West
In this session, we examined the influence of western artistic conventions and subject matter on East Asian artistic traditions and representations from the earliest points of contact.

Program Benefits

  • 1 free WA OSPI Clock Hour per session attended
  • Online resources

This program was sponsored by the East Asia Resource Center at the University of Washington, and funded by a Freeman Foundation grant in support of the National Consortium for Teaching about Asia (NCTA).