Interested in religious architecture? Join the Center for East Asian Studies and the Department of Art History on Wednesday, November 8th at 5:30PM for the lecture “Dramatizing Architectural Space: The Case of a 14th Century Chinese Temple” by Wei-Cheng Lin, Associate Professor of Chinese Art and Architecture at The University of Chicago.
Abstract: Chinese timber-frame architectural tradition underwent a drastic change in its spatial conception during the Song-Yuan period, also known as China’s Middle Period. This is best exemplified in religious architecture, which produced megastructures with unprecedentedly large interior spaces. Using the early 14th-century main hall of the Water God’s Temple in Hongdong, Shanxi, as an example, this talk by Prof. Wei-Cheng Lin (University of Chicago) will demonstrate that architectural modifications orchestrated a multisensorial experience of the interior that is structurally counterintuitive but spatially dramatized. The dramatic quality of the timber-frame architecture during the Song-Yuan period was not so much ignited by the ritual performance or building technology as by the broader visual culture and drama tradition of the period.