Smart Lecture: Transoceanic Trade Repictured: Coromandel Lacquer Screen and the Mobile Image in Global Exchange (by Lianming Wang)

Date of event:   26/05/2022 − 26/05/2022


Title: Transoceanic Trade Repictured: Coromandel Lacquer Screen and the Mobile Image in Global Exchange
Speaker: Lianming Wang
Format: Hybrid (in person and over Zoom)
Date: 26 May 2022
Time: 5 pm CT
Organized by: Department of Art History, University of Chicago, Chicago, IL, USA

We invite you to join the Department of Art History at the University of Chicago for this upcoming lecture as part of the 2021-22 Smart Lecture series. The lecture is Thursday, May 26 at 5:00pm CT with a Q&A session and reception to follow. This event will take place in CWAC 157 with a simultaneous live stream over zoom.

This talk highlights the function of the Coromandel lacquer screen as a mobile vehicle and its rise as a global medium in the early modern period. Through examining a wide array of portrayals of the Sino-Dutch encounters, it argues that the recurrence of this theme and its migration process on lacquer screens can be comprehended as part of Intra-Asian competition in a global market. Behind the entangled histories of the Coromandel screens was the rise of Chinese officials who used this particular mobile and monumental medium to assert their growing claim to power and access to the outside world, equal to Japanese warlords, European kings and nobility, and later the Qing emperors.

Lianming Wang is a Balzan Junior Fellow in Global Environmental History at Freiburg Institute for Advanced Studies, University of Freiburg i.Br. He has been a visiting professor at the Department of History of Art of the University of Cambridge and the Kunsthistorisches Institut in Florenz (KHI) – Max-Planck-Institut. Prior to that, Wang was an Assistant Professor of Chinese Art History at Heidelberg University, a Postdoc Fellow of the KHI research group “Art Histories and Aesthetic Practices” at the Berlin-based Forum Transregional Studies, and a Lecturer at the University of Würzburg. His areas of research include global encounters of arts and culture in early modernity and the artistic practices and materiality associated with trans-territorial animals. His latest volume, Jesuitenerbe in Peking. Sakralbauten und transkulturelle Räume, 1600–1800 (Winter Verlag, 2020) explores the global entanglements of Jesuit art and architecture in the 17th and 18th centuries, and was awarded the Academy Prize (2021) of Heidelberg Academy of Science and Humanities.