East Asian scroll

The Ph.D. program in East Asian Art at Harvard consists of training in Chinese and Japanese art history with the three faculty who oversee the program – Yukio Lippit, Melissa McCormick, and Eugene Wang – as well as complementary coursework in Western art history, and the languages, history, literature, and religions of East Asia.

Offerings include introductory lectures, theme-based courses, and advanced seminars on painting, sculpture, architecture, prints, Buddhist art, modern art, museum research, and pedagogical training. The examination of objects in the Harvard University Art Museums and the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, regular study trips to East Asian, European, and American collections, and instruction with a steady stream of visiting professors and scholars in residence are integral aspects of the program.

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Featured Course

HAA 188V - Sacred Places and Sacred Objects: The Art of Japanese Religion

Samuel Morse

An interdisciplinary study of the art and material culture of the buddhist and Shinto religious traditions.  The class will focus on the temples and shrines that serve as the loci of religious practice and the works of art associated with them - sculptures and paintings, sutras and reliquaries, ritual implements and temple adornments.  

It will examine in depth some of Japan's most influential sacred places, including Ise Shrine, Todaiji, the Byodoin, and Mount Fuji, and will also look at the way contemporary architects and artists such as Ando Tadao and Sugimoto Hiroshi have attempted to create new sacred places and sacred objects.

Course website (HUID Required)