HAA 281M - Sesshū Tōyō and Medieval Japanese Ink Painting





Steffani Bennett


This seminar offers students an immersive exploration of the life and work of Sesshū Tōyō (1420 – ca. 1506), one of Japan’s most celebrated painters who has been little studied outside of his home country. Throughout the course, we will investigate the contours of Sesshū's biography, the construction of his artistic persona in the early modern period, his roles as a landscape painter, figure painter, and literati-monk painter, and his engagement with the larger field of ink painting in Japanese cultural history. As part of the seminar, students will read various primary and secondary sources pertaining to Sesshū, ink painting and the broader cultural sphere of fifteenth-century East Asia. This course will be restricted to students with ability in either Japanese or Chinese language, or with permission of the instructor.