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The First Emperor and sculpture in China

Nickel, Lukas (2013) 'The First Emperor and sculpture in China.' Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies, 76 . pp. 413-447.

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Abstract

Sculpture as an artistic medium was widely employed in the arts of Greece and the Hellenistic East, but played only a minor role in ancient East Asia. This changed dramatically with the First Emperor of China who marked his ascent to the throne in 221 BC with the erection of giant bronze sculptures outside his palace and the installation of thousands of terracotta figures in his tomb. The current text sets out to investigate the sudden and short-lived surge of sculpture making in third-century BC China and places it in the context of developments across Asia of the time. The text joins art historical, archaeological and textual evidence to investigate whether the First Emperor’s extraordinary interest in sculpture may have been the result of contacts with the contemporary Hellenistic world.

Item Type: Articles
Keywords: Sculpture, Hellenism, Cultural exchange, Qin-period China, Terracotta warriors, Qin Shi Huangdi, Graeco-Bactria, Ai Khanoum
SOAS Departments & Centres: Faculty of Arts and Humanities > Department of Art and Archaeology
Legacy Departments > Centre of Chinese Studies [closed]
ISSN: 0041977X
DOI (Digital Object Identifier): 10.1017/S0041977X13000487
Depositing User: Lukas Nickel
Date Deposited: 23 Oct 2013 15:12
URI: http://eprints.soas.ac.uk/id/eprint/17311

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