Tuesdays & Thursdays, 4:30 pm - 5:45 pm
This course surveys artistic production in Japan from the prehistoric period to the twenty-first century. The goal is not to define the national or “Eastern” character of Japanese art, but to interrogate manifestations of human creativity produced in the archipelago on their own terms. Students learn to analyze key examples of painting, prints, sculpture, and architecture, while also exploring calligraphy, garden design, ceramics, performance art, and fashion. Essential themes include the relationship between art and sociopolitical development, the complexities of Sino-Japanese cultural exchange, and the integration of art into the practice and conceptualization of religion and philosophy, as well as the performance of gender, race, and class.