The New Way of Tea and its Art in Modern Japan

Third Thursday Lectures
Thursday 16 Jun 2016 | 6 PM

Weston Room
Cathedral Hostry
Norwich NR1 4DH

Dr Seung Yeon Sang
Robert & Lisa Sainsbury Fellow

About the Lecture

Chanoyu (literally means “hot water for tea” but generally translated as “the Japanese tea ceremony) is more than making tea or drinking a bowl of tea. From its inception in the fifteenth century, chanoyu has been a codified practice that transforms a drinking activity into a ritual and sets it apart from everyday life. As chanoyu was labeled as traditional in the process of Japan’s intensive Westernization and modernization, the practice of tea simultaneously became characterized as a routine expressive of Japanese-ness. This talk will deconstruct seemingly inherent connections between chanoyu and “unique Japanese essence” by raising questions such as what political and cultural forces shaped a newly imagined identity of chanoyu in modern Japan? and how did famed tea utensils become representative national arts?

To book your seat, please go to the booking form or email the Sainsbury Institute

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Admission free. All welcome. Places are limited and booking is essential.

About the Speaker

Dr Seung Yeon Sang is a historian of Japanese art with particular focus on the Japanese practice of appreciating and collecting ceramics in chanoyu. Her primary research interests are transnational forms of ceramic production, the impact of Japan’s modern transformations on aesthetics and history-writing, and the meaning and uses of the museum. Her dissertation examines the trajectory of ceramic scholarship in modern Japan from its emergence in the 1910s to the first pinnacle of its development from 1924 to 1931. She has received fellowships from the Japan Foundation, the Korea Foundation, the Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York), and the Smithsonian Institution (Freer and Sackler Galleries of Art).

To book your seat, please go to the booking form or email the Sainsbury Institute

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About the Third Thursday Lecture Series

Every Third Thursday of the month, the Sainsbury Institute for the Study of Japanese Arts and Cultures hosts a lecture on a topic related to the art and culture of Japan. Talks begin at 6pm (50-minute lecture followed by refreshments). Speakers are all specialists in their field and the talks are intended to be accessible to those with no prior knowledge of Japanese history.

The lecture are normally held at the Weston Room, Cathedral Hostry, Norwich NR1 4DH. The Third Thursday Lecture series is funded by the Great Britain Sasakawa Foundation, Yakult and the Robert and Lisa Sainsbury Charitable Trust.

Admission is free and all are welcome. Booking essential.
To book your seat, please go to the booking form or email the Sainsbury Institute

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Future Lectures

21 July | Dr James McMullen
Oriental Institute, Wolfson College, Oxford
Confucius in Tokugawa Japan: unofficial ceremonies of worship
This lecture is part of the Carmen Blacker Lecture Series 2016

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15 September 2016 | Rupert Faulkner

Senior Curator, Japan, Asian Department at Victoria and Albert Museum
Title TBC

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Third Thursday Lectures is a monthly lecture series supported by

TTL logo GBSF Yakult


Image: (Clockwise from left) Tea bowl, Hagi, Japan, 1625-1675, V&A Museum, London
Fresh-water jar, Tamba, Japan, 1600-1700, V&A Museum, London
Tea caddy, Zeze, Japan, 1600-1700, V&A Museum, London