Readers may be interested in this webinar happening on 5 September. Registrations via the link below.
The webinar, inspired by the intellectual agenda of the recently published 2-volume « The Creative South » (Singapore: ISEAS, 2022), reconsiders the creative contribution of the littoral and insular regions of Maritime Asia to shaping new paradigms in the Buddhist and Hindu art and architecture of the medieval Asian world. Current research increasingly shows that the Southeast Asian ‘peripheries’ were freer to innovate than the traditional ‘centres’, while the flourishing trade routes provided them with the necessary flow of human and material resources. As a result, the early kingdoms of Maritime Asia became well-springs of cults, ritual technologies, sacred art / architecture, and the new political models they underpinned. Far from being a mere southern conduit for the maritime circulation of Indic religions in the period from ca. the 7th to the 14th century, those regions transformed across mainland and island polities, the rituals, icons, and architecture that embodied these religious insights with a dynamism that often eclipsed the established cultural centres in Northern India, Central Asia, and mainland China. This webinar brings together new research aiming to recalibrate the importance of these innovations in art and architecture, thereby highlighting the cultural creativity of the monsoon-influenced Southern rim of the Asian landmass.