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Art, History, and Sinology: An International Conference in Honor of Martin J. Powers

Nov. 9–10, 2018 | Weiser Hall, 500 Church St., 10th Floor

Nov. 9: 1pm-5pm;  Nov. 10: 9am-6:00pm

Guest of Honor

Martin J. Powers

Martin Powers is Sally Michelson Davidson Professor of Chinese Arts and Cultures at the University of Michigan, and former director of the Center for Chinese Studies. His research focuses on the role of the arts in the history of human relations in China, with an emphasis on issues of personal agency and social justice. In 1993 his Art and Political Expression in Early China, Yale University Press, received the Levenson Prize for the best book in pre-twentieth century Chinese studies.  In 2006, his Pattern and Person: Ornament, Society, and Self in Classical China was published by Harvard University Press East Asian Series and was awarded the Levenson Prize for 2008. He has served on numerous national committees, including NEH, ACLS, and the advisory board of the Center for Advanced Study in the Visual Arts. He has taught at Tsinghua University, Peking University, and Zhejiang University, and has published articles and essays in multiple venues in Chinese, including an editorial series in the journal of culture and current affairs, Du Shu. In 2009 he was resident at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton writing a book on the role of 'China' in the political debates of the English Enlightenment. Together with Dr. Katherine Tsiang, he co-edited Looking at Asian Art and the Blackwell Companion to Chinese Art.

His latest book, China and England: the Preindustrial Struggle for Justice in Word and Image, is currently available from Routledge.  Martin Powers’ next project will be a close study of the Classical Chinese term xiaoyao, “wondering freely,” and how it played out visually and politically during the Han and Song periods. 

A public reception follows Friday’s session at Weiser Hall, 10th floor.

This event is sponsored by Lieberthal-Rogel Center for Chinese Studies at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.

Additional support is provided by the Department of the History Art, University of Michigan and the University of Michigan Museum of Art (UMMA) as well as Liu Jiuzhou and Qian Ying.

Conference organizer: J. P. Park, University of California, Riverside.

Image Credit:  The Orchid Pavilion Gathering. Sheng Mao-yeh, 1621, ink and color on silk, 12 ½” x 84 ½”. University of Michigan Museum of Art, Museum purchase made possible by the Margaret Watson Parker Art Collection Fund, 1974/1.244