Art of South and Southeast Asia
Things to get:
- Your China/Korea
reading homework
- Blank white sheet
of paper from the front of
the room
- Notebook paper
Things to do:
- Be seated IN
with the items above
PRIOR TO the bell ringing.
Art of South and Southeast Asia
◦ Complete a “A Draw a…”
 Dive your paper into two even sections
 Fold “hamburger” style
 On the left: draw an image of a Hindu god
 Label important characteristics
 On the right: draw an image of a Seated Buddha
 Label important characteristics
If time allows, please use color. Remember: it’s about content
accuracy and NOT being Picasso… or Eakins… or Homer...
Describe the art and architecture of the Indus civilization
Explain how Buddhist beliefs were reflected in the art and
architecture of ancient India and Southeast Asia
Explain how Hindu beliefs were reflected in art and architecture in
ancient India and Southeast Asia
Identify the materials and formal strategies ancient Indian and
Southeast Asian artists employed to represent Hindu and Buddhist
Differentiate between southern and northern style Hindu temples
Describe Southeast Asia’s contributions to Hindu and Buddhist art
and architecture
Discuss the influence trade exerted on art and architecture in ancient
India and Southeast Asia
Identify examples of intercultural contact within India and Southeast
Asia, and between Asian and other ancient civilizations.
Themes to Consider
Narrative in Art
Human Body in Art
Architecture of Sacred Spaces
Portrayal of Nature
Questions to Consider
What is the importance of the
commissioning of the artwork?
How can art be used to establish social
control and political authority?
South and Southeast Asia:
Indus Valley Civilization
Mohenjo-daro and Harappa
 Commercially
 Aligned to compass
 No designated
 Art objects not found
◦ Mostly small/utilitarian
Robed Male Figure
From Mohenjo-daro, Pakistan, ca. 2000-1900 BCE
Shows ability to
show human form,
but subject is unclear
 What are the
similarities to
Sumerian sculptures?
Indus Seals
Used to identify
 Official Signature
 Trade relationship
with Mesopotamia
◦ Creatures, both
recognized and
Merging of Cultures:
The Aryans and Hinduism
Origins disputed
 1500 BCE- Vedas
were written
◦ Sanskrit
◦ 4 texts define religious
No Aryan god images
are present
◦ Gods related to the
◦ All are male
Hinduism Cont’d
800-500 BCE
◦ Define reincarnation
(samsara); karma;
moksha (ending
reincarnation by
merging into the
Dancing Shiva, rock-cut relief in cave
temple, Badami, India.
Shiva as Nataraja, ca. 1000. Bronze.
Naltunai Ishvaram Temple, Punjai.
1) What do the differences depicted in the relief and statue signify?
2) What is the significance between the stone sculpture’s
permanent place and the statues mobility in the Hindu religion?
Vishvanatha Temple
Rajarajeshvara Temple
Hindu Temples… a review
Siddhartha Gautama
◦ Birth @ 400 BCE at
◦ His achievement of
Buddhahood while
meditating under the
Bodhi tree
◦ First sermon as the
Buddha Sarnath
◦ Attainment of Nirvana
at death
Self discipline/selfdenial
Maurya Dynasty (4th-2nd century BCE)
Buddhism (modified)
used to govern India
Implemented by
Laws written on
monolithic columns
Elaborate capitals
◦ Lion Gate
 Pillar carved for Samath
Great Stupa
Stupa= symbol of the
◦ World mtn. w/cardinal
points delineated by the
gates (toranas)
◦ Square fenced in area
(hamika) atop the dome
symbolizes one of Buddha’s
◦ Middle of (hamika) is a pole
(yasti)that symbolizes the
axis of the universe
worshipper must walk
clockwise around the
stupa them climb to the
next level
◦ Reflects rational, coherent,
symmetrical world
Serves as an
intermediary for the
worshipper to
petition aide and
 Why are so few of
these images left?
Buddha in human form
Indian gods weren’t
depicted at the time
of the first figural
image of Buddha
Why were images of
Buddha created?
Buddha in Human Form
Two Main Styles
Gandhara- Seated Buddha
Mathura- Seated Buddha
Which seated Buddha shows a Hellenistic influence?
Gandhara Seated Buddha
Hellenistic work
◦ Wavy hair
◦ Ribbon around the
◦ Stylized draperies
of the robe
Mathura Seated Buddha
Closer to Indian
◦ More massive chest
◦ Columnar legs
 Closer to male form of
Becomes the #1
style choice of
Gupta work from
Cave V, Udayagiri
Boar Avatar of Vishnu
Commissioned by
Mathura style
Political overtones?
Putting your knowledge to the test!
Using the images given, create a visual aid with a
partner that completes the following:
◦ Identify the works as Hindu or Buddhist art
◦ Finally, select a theme and explain how Hindu and
Buddhist art can fulfill that theme. BE SPECIFIC! You
may have a separate statement for each religion.
Exit Slip: Angor Wat
1) How tall is the pinnacle and how is its
height achieved?
2) What is a naga and how is it used in
Angkor Wat?
3) What artistic preference is seen in Khmer
4) How many square feet of reliefs cover the
walls of the Gallery of Bas-Reliefs? To what
does the author liken these reliefs?
5) Pretend that you are leading a tour of
Angkor Wat. What parts of the complex
would you visit? Why?
6) Consider the themes presented at the
beginning of this presentation: Is Angor Wat a
Buddhist or Hindu temple or a shrine for a
multitude of dieties? Why?

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