Asian Art History

Asian Art Hostory

Looking At Asian Art History

Eastern artistry is known all over the globe.  Although they come from different parts of Asia, they have a distinct quality that makes them easily recognized as Asian.  To gain a better understanding about them, it would help to indulge in some Asian art history.

One of the most known art forms from the East is Asian watercolor painting.  It started as far back as 4,000 BC and has been around for way beyond 6,000 years.  It has gone through continuous development with every era and its corresponding social conditions highlighted in each variation.  Both the natural elements and social situations have made an impact on traditional painting.  More so, it has been highly associated with the other artistic crafts in Asia such as the designs of and decorations on pots and other claywares.  Although watercolor painting has also been a popular art in the West, there are certain features that are unique to its Eastern counterpart.  Chinese paintings usually depict their most revered character, which is the dragon.  Religion-inspired creations can also be seen in the depiction of the Buddha.

Aside from its large population and the Great Wall, China is also known for Asian silk art.  The history of silk goes a long way back to the 27th century BC.  The country was monopolizing it for years until the latter part of the 1st millenium BC when the Silk Road was opened.  Although silk was also used in various applications, which include writing, it is known to the rest of the world as a clothing material.  The earliest presence of silk was determined to be at the Yangshao culture sites in Shanxi.  The evidence of this was a silk cocoon that was split in half and determined to date back to 4000 to 3000 BC.

Aside from being used as a clothing material, silk can actually be adorned with pretty designs by painting on them.  With the use of dye or paint and a couple of paintbrushes, one can add images and splashes of color on ordinary silk.  In the olden times, this is how the silk clothing of the upper class Asians were made to be more dominant and attractive.

Uniquely Asian, Chinese calligraphy is more of an art than a practical communication tool.  It is one of the four basic disciplines and skills in Chinese literati.  Historical records show that this stylish representation of Chinese letters and words started within the 2nd and 4th centuries’ latter  half.  Every era in the history of China brought about certain developments and unique styles into this art form.

Thailand art, on the other hand, can easily be pointed out in the numerous temples in the country.  For a long time in the past, the art in Thailand was considered to be its religion.  Its most classic forms of art can be seen in the field of architecture.  The glazed and colored tiles along with the superimposed roofing are uniquely Thai.  It shares the gilding as well as other decorations with other oriental countries though.

This is just a quick look at the background of Asian art history.  The wide variety of art forms in this continent rivals the large number of countries making up the glorious East.

Next is an article looking at Asian Watercolor Paintings