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AP Art History

Unit 8: 300 BCE - 1980 CE

South, East, and Southeast Asia

Images 192-212

Main Ideas:

  • Temples and other religious works were built on a grand scale to allow practitioners to more easily engage with them and engage with God

  • Many smaller regions adopted the cultural framework of their larger neighbors (South Asia → Southeast Asia; China → Korea & Japan) but added their own cultural touches in their artwork

Main Ideas of the Topic

  • Temple buildings are generally designed to physically represent its religion's "cosmos" or "paradise," and practitioners can experience this feeling of enlightenment & unity with the divine by ascending a designated pathway through the temple

  • Other works of art use different religious imagery to showcase one's spiritual devotion or the influence of a certain religion or god

Main Ideas of the Topic

  • Gained Hindu & Buddhist influence from India, but adapted Indian customs to their own indigenous cultures to create unique architectural styles on a regional basis

Main Ideas of the Topic

  • Uses religious and spiritual imagery to not only show the power of China's rulers but also the protections they have in the afterlife

  • Many non-elite works use natural elements to promote balance and harmony in life in alignment with Daoist and Confucian ideals

Main Ideas of the Topic

  • Uses Chinese traditions and general ideals (such as piety of elite officials, belief in spirituality and wealth, etc.) as a framework, but adds on aspects of Korean culture (such as shaminism)

Main Ideas of the Topic

  • Political & religious works combine the tranquility of zen meditation with the fierceness of samurai culture

  • Many works inspired by zen meditation portray the idea of illusory and ideal beauty
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