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Chinese Art History - Essay Example

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The essay "Chinese Art History" discusses some of the ways in which painting, sculpture, and architecture have been used in China to support or project religious and political claims of authority. Artist in ancient period were critical in promoting a given faith. …
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Download file to see previous pages Artistic features did not only feature in religious matters but, also the politics of the community. History indicates that political dynasties in China had a specific symbol. For example, Han dynasty (206 B.C –A.D 220) used bronze horse as its symbol. Within the Hans territory, the sculpture of the horse appeared in various centers. This enabled the society to recognize the ruler of that time. The painting of the emperors appeared in most public places as a means of promoting their interest to their communities. For example, the painting of the Han dynasty founder Liu Bang was critical in demarcating Liu’s territory. Ideally, the political figures instituted their rules by placing the sculptures or portraits in various temples or public places. In most cases, the subject of the emperor swore their allegiance to the temples where their rulers resided. When a political dynasty collapsed or when a change of power transfigured in the Chinese communities, the new ruler could build his dynasty. The portraits of the predecessor could no longer feature in public places. Further, territory demarcation could follow by placing the portraits of the new ruler. This system did not only, helped the community to identity their leaders but also swear allegiance to them. The politicians expanded their territory by placing their sculptures among the communities they ruled. For example, Wu Di expanded his territory to areas such as Mongolia, east of Korea among other places by instituting the sculpture of his Terra Cotta Army. (Wang 84). 2. Many Chinese works of art deliberately refer to the past in one way or another; using examples from at least three different historical periods, discuss some of these references and explain how they affect the viewer's understanding of the meaning of the work. The Chinese community used art to promote various interests such religion, education, or philosophy. For examples, during Confucianism period, Zhou Dynasty (1122-221 B. C), artists sculpted portraits that illustrated Confucian principles as the guide to the society (Wang 85). The viewers of the portrait were to remember the Confucian principles whenever they saw the portrait. The portrait of Confucian symbolized moral aspects in the community such as humanness as found in the legendary writings of Confucian. The Confucian period emphasized morality above divinity thereby influencing the Chinese community to incline towards the principles of Confucianism. The viewers of the Confucian portrait reflected the Confucian philosophy. In essence, the portrait served as a reminder to the Confucian philosophy. The viewers of the Buddha portrait used it to illustrate the divine nature proclaimed by Buddha. His followers used his ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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