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Upcoming Event

Saturday University: Architecture and Cosmic Water in India

Sat Oct 21 2017

Asian Art Museum

Off-Site

10 AM – 11:30 AM

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Dip into a variety of waterscapes, past and present, as our speakers explore a complex of meanings, cultural traditions, and contemporary environmental issues. How did water imagery in early China form a basis for philosophy? From Chinese landscape painting to climate change in low-lying Bangladesh, join us for a cruise through ideas about water.

October & December: Seattle University, Pigott Auditorium
November: Seattle Art Museum, Plestcheeff Auditorium

Architecture, Stepwells, and Cosmic Water in Western India
Michael Meister, Professor of South Asia Studies, University of Pennsylvania
PIGT

A cosmology rooted in water lies behind most monumental architecture in India. From a very early period, tanks and wells were built as both symbolic and practical structures. Some of the most remarkable feats of architecture are stepwells in dry Western India, which stored water throughout the year. Excavated several stories underground, these stepwells sometimes included columns and walls lined with sculpture—almost like upside-down temples reaching below ground.

About the Presenter

Michael W. Meister is an art historian, archaeologist, and architectural historian at the University of Pennsylvania. He is the W. Norman Brown Professor in the Department of History of Art and South Asia Studies. In addition, he is Consulting Curator, Asian Section, at the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology. His research and writing focuses on temple architecture and other aspects of the art of the Indian sub-continent. Current projects include "Mountain Temples and Temple-Mountains" for the Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians.

Saturday University is held in partnership with the University of Washington Jackson School of International Studies, Seattle University, and Elliott Bay Book Company.

OTHER LECTURES IN THIS SERIES

Oct 7

The Way of Water in Early Chinese Thought
PIGT

Oct 7

The Way of Water in Early Chinese Thought
PIGT

OCT 14

The Way of Water: Reading Landscape and Gender in Southern Song China
PIGT

OCT 21

Architecture, Stepwells, and Cosmic Water in Western India
PIGT

OCT 28

Creating Land in Paradise: Protest, Rights, and Sacred Waters on Bali's South Coast
PIGT

NOV 4

Following Rivers Rich in Honey: Narratives of Travel, Environmental Design, and the Indian Landscape
SAM

NOV 11

History Flows from the Mekong Mud
SAM

NOV 18

The Pirate Archipelago: Images of Maritime Power in Late Medieval Japan
SAM

DEC 2

River Life and Climate Change in Bangladesh
PIGT

DEC 9

Hokusai’s Waterscapes
PIGT

Full series tickets: $80; SAM members $40
Individual lecture tickets are now available online in advance. They are still at the door the day of the lecture: $10, SAM members $5; free at the door for students with ID
Please arrive to your seat 10 minutes before the program starts, or your seat may be released.

QUESTIONS? CONTACT US

206.442.8480 gardnercenter@seattleartmuseum.org

Photo: Michael Meister