Porcelain and Lacquer Abroad: Europe Encounters Asia


From 1500 to 1800, Europeans primarily used exported porcelains and lacquers to engage with China and Japan, which were neither under colonial control, nor easily accessible by travel. Collected first in kunstkammers by rulers and nobles as emblems of power, these initially rare, exotic luxuries retained their prestige even as they became more widely available and explicitly gendered. Combining deep object studies with collectors' case studies from across Europe, this course examines how early modern Europeans used porcelains and lacquers to satisfy their curiosity about and material desire for China and Japan. In addition to practical training in essential primary sources such as inventories, it will also introduce theories of luxury and consumption, gift exchange, cross-cultural interaction, material culture, and the global movement of objects. Prerequisites: L01 111 preferred; one art history course or permission of instructor
Course Attributes: FA AH; EN H; BU Hum; BU IS; AS HUM; AS LCD; GF AH; FA HUM; AR HUM

Section 01

Porcelain and Lacquer Abroad: Europe Encounters Asia
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