[KS] response and art history question

Maya Stiller geumgangsan at gmail.com
Wed Sep 9 11:49:28 EDT 2015

Hello Andrew,

Three criteria determine the production of pottery: availability of
appropriate material, knowledge of production/firing technology, and
consumer needs. Depending on these three criteria, pottery can look
very different. However, since you asked about the design in general,
geometric/abstract and floral design can be commonly found in ceramics
made all over the world.

For a stylistic analysis (form, shape, glaze, design) of ceramics, art
historians usually pick objects from the same time period. So, if you
are interested in a comparative analysis of Korean/East Asian and
Mediterranean ceramics, it might make sense to look at some
proto-Three Kingdoms, Yayoi and Han dynasty pottery.

I hope you find this helpful.

Best wishes,

Maya Stiller, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Korean Art and Visual Culture, University of Kansas
Soon Young Kim Post-doctoral Fellow 2015-16
Korea Institute, Harvard University
CGIS South, Room S228
1730 Cambridge St
Cambridge, MA 02138

On 9/9/15, Andrew Logie <zatouichi at gmail.com> wrote:
> Dear all,
> Two things.
> 1) Buddhism and Dan'gun
> Thanks for the useful responses (including some off the list).
> Maya Stiller, yes, I like that approach and try to incorporate art history
> in the limited time of the lecture; thanks for those recommendations.
> I would love to read Richard D. McBride's book on Silla Buddhism. Our
> library online has online access, which don't seem to be printable (I like
> working with paper copies so I can write on them).
> Boudewijn Walraven (and John Jorgensen if he's on this list), yes, I saw the
> Jorgensen (1998) reference in Breuker (2010) and would be interested to read
> that paper/chapter. Again, I don't have access to the Perspectives on Korea
> (1998) in which it's contained. I wonder if anyone might have a PDF
> available. The final composite form of the Hwan'ung-Dan'gun myth is no doubt
> a Goryeo product but I wonder what Buddhist influence could be identified
> beyond the superficial naming of Hwan'in and Hwan'ung.
> Perhaps I shouldn't give away my entire thesis but I think the interesting
> thing about the Hwan'ung-Dan'gun myth is its composite nature: whatever you
> try to label it as ('Buddhist' 'shamanic', 'folk', 'oral epic' etc) it
> isn't, but rather it's a perfect amalgam of an indigenously formed northern
> peninsula Goryeo worldview and obviously wasn't created overnight.
> 2) Art History question
> My current (temporary) office space is in the Classics department (what's
> left of it) and in the corridor they have some ancient Mediterranean pottery
> on display (see photos attached). I was surprised to notice that these
> feature very similar patterning to that found on Korean celadon and
> buncheong maebyeong vases. When I do my art history lecture, I've explained
> these as lotus leaves and geometric 'cloud' patterns reflecting Buddhist and
> Taoist influences, but if they're on ancient Greek pottery from a 1,000
> years earlier, that probably isn't true. I'm surely not the first person to
> make this discovery, so what are art historians' views on this?
> sincerely
> Andrew L

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