Taoism and the Arts of China

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University of California Press, Jan 1, 2000 - Art - 415 pages
Taoism and the Arts of China brings together a remarkable collection of art from one of China's most ancient and influential traditions. Produced to accompany the first major exhibition ever organized on the Taoist philosophy and religion, this opulent book includes more than 150 works of art from as early as the late Zhou dynasty (fifth-third century b.c.) to the Qing dynasty (1644-1911). Many of these works are paintings that show the breathtaking range of style and subject that makes the Taoist heritage so rich. Sculpture, calligraphy, rare books, textiles, and ritual objects are also represented.

Like the exhibition, the book is organized thematically. It begins with the sage Laozi (to whom the Daode Jing is attributed), and moves on to explore the birth of religious Taoism and the interaction between Taoism, Buddhism, and Confucianism. A wealth of subjects are covered: the gods of the Taoist pantheon, ritual, the boundaries and intersections between Taoism and popular religion, Taoist Immortals and Realized Beings, the role of alchemy, sacred landscape and its significance, and Taoist temples and their architecture.

Taoism and the Arts of China includes an engaging series of introductory essays by scholars with a deep understanding of their subjects. Among the topics discussed are a historical introduction to Taoism, archaeological evidence for early Taoist art, and a general introduction to the functions of art in religious Taoism. Lavishly illustrated with over 150 color images, this volume affords a sweeping view of an artistic terrain that until now has received too little exposure in the West. Its publication constitutes a major advance in Western understanding of this important tradition.
 

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Taoism and the arts of China

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Taoism is one of China's primary spiritual exports. Yet although yin and yang, one of its main concepts, seems to appear on every American street corner, average Americans know very little about ... Read full review

Taoism and the arts of China

User Review  - Not Available - Book Verdict

Taoism is one of China's primary spiritual exports. Yet although yin and yang, one of its main concepts, seems to appear on every American street corner, average Americans know very little about ... Read full review

Contents

Foreword CATALOGUE OF THE EXHIBITION
6
Acknowledgments TAOIST TRADITION 1 THE FORMATION OF THE STEPHEN LITTLE
7
Notes to the Reader 115 1 Laozi and the Origins of Taoism
9
Taoist Cosmology
10
Chronological Table of Chinese Periods the Immortals 3 Sacred Mountains and Cults of and Dynasties 11 The Taoist CHURCH
11
Taoism and the Arts of China 163 1 The Beginnings of Religious Taoism STEPHEN LITTLE 189 2 Taoist Ritual
13
The Story of the Way 227 3 The Taoist Pantheon KRISTOFER SCHIPPER
33
Taoist Architecture III THE TAOIST RENAISSANCE NANCY SHATZMAN STEINHARDT 255 1 Taoism and Popular Religion
57
Inner Alchemy and Its Symbolism
337
The Sacred Landscape
357
Chinese Names and Terms
384
Bibliography
392
Contributors
406
Lenders to the Exhibition
407
Photography Credits
408
Index
409

The Visual Culture 275 2 Divine Manifestations of Yin Goddesses of Wudoumi Dao and Female Saints Wu HUNG 291 3 Zhenwu the Perfected War...
77
Taoism and Art at the Court of Song Huizong 313 4 Taoist Immortals PATRICIA EBREY
95

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About the author (2000)

Stephen Little, Pritzker Curator of Asian Art at the Art Institute of Chicago, is an authority on Chinese and Japanese art. His numerous publications include Spirit Stones of China (California, 1999), Visions of the Dharma: Japanese Buddhist Paintings and Prints in the Honolulu Academy of Arts(1991), and Chinese Ceramics of the Transitional Period,1620-1683 (1983).

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