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 Courses

JAPNHIST 240 - Museum Research in Japanese Art: Seminar

Ryuichi Abe, Melissa McCormick, Rachel Saunders

Examines works in the Harvard Art Museums in art historical, literary, and religious context in preparation for future exhibitions. The Fall 2016 seminar focuses on the celebrated thirteenth-century sculpture of Shôtoku Taishi (99.1979.1), the texts, sculptures, and relics, once stored inside the statue, and how the ensemble sheds new light on Kamakura religious history, charismatic monks such as Eison and Ippen, and the meaning behind dedicatory offerings by nuns and laypeople in the medieval period.

HAA  289k - Edo Painting Spring 2017
Yukio Lippit and Rachel Saunders
This graduate-level seminar explores painting of Edo-period Japan in its full diversity, through examples drawn from the Feinberg Collection. Each week a different set of artists and schools will be examined through readings and in-depth discussions of individual paintings. Frequent viewings will be held in the Harvard Art Museums.