Approaches to Chinese Painting History HISTART4059

  • Academic Session: 2023-24
  • School: School of Culture and Creative Arts
  • Credits: 40
  • Level: Level 4 (SCQF level 10)
  • Typically Offered: Runs Throughout Semesters 1 and 2
  • Available to Visiting Students: No

Short Description

This course examines the history of Chinese painting by treating painting not only as an image but as an image bearing object and an important part of material culture. It introduces the students to methodological issues relating to the study of non-western cultures and the application of art historical approaches to the study of Chinese painting.


1 x 1hr lecture; 1 x 1hr seminar per week over 10 weeks, per semester, as scheduled on MyCampus. This is one of the Honours options in History of Art and may not run every year. The options that are running this session are available on MyCampus.

Requirements of Entry

Successful completion of Junior Honours History of Art. 

Excluded Courses





Portfolio of three short papers (3 x 1000 words) - 35%

Oral Presentation (10 minutes with peer review 5 of mins) 15%

Visual Test - 10%

Research Essay (4000 words) - 40%

Main Assessment In: April/May

Are reassessment opportunities available for all summative assessments? Not applicable

Reassessments are normally available for all courses, except those which contribute to the Honours classification. For non Honours courses, students are offered reassessment in all or any of the components of assessment if the satisfactory (threshold) grade for the overall course is not achieved at the first attempt. This is normally grade D3 for undergraduate students and grade C3 for postgraduate students. Exceptionally it may not be possible to offer reassessment of some coursework items, in which case the mark achieved at the first attempt will be counted towards the final course grade. Any such exceptions for this course are described below. 

Course Aims

This course aims to:

■ encourage students to engage with current approaches to the study of Chinese painting, particularly from the point of view of material and visual culture

■ introduce students to the historiography and methodological issues concerning the study of non-western art

■ trace the history of production of Chinese paintings through key aesthetic, economic, political, social and technological developments

■ offer students an opportunity to object-based art historical training

■ expand students' analytical thinking and writing and to develop their oral presentation skills

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of this course students will be able to:

■ apply multi-disciplinary skills and ideas to the study of Chinese painting history

■ identify and indicate dates and styles in attribution of Chinese paintings

■ identify and interpret iconographical transference from painting to other media

■ cross reference different types of evidence, both written and visual, in the analysis of Chinese paintings

■ present an interpretive argument with close reference to visual evidence

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Students must submit at least 75% by weight of the components (including examinations) of the course's summative assessment.