CIHA 2016 in Beijing

34th World Congress of Art History

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ZHANG Shubin
Divine Guidance and Visual Pilgrimage: The logic of space-time of the Panoramic Mural Map of Mount Wutai in Dunhuang

Session 13 Transmission and Adoption

China Academy of Art


    There are several murals about Mount Wutai at Mogao Grottoes, painted during the medieval ages, in which the sections consist of the map of Mount Wutai, the Buddhist historic place of holy occurrence. Based on the these works we know how Mount Wutai became a Buddhist holy site and how the sacred space was reproduced in East-Asia.

    This paper concerns the visual communication and expansion of Buddhism in East Asia. The Panoramic Mural Map of Mount Wutai from Dunhuang Mogao cave 61 was a major influence, combined with the tradition of Dunhuang art, Dunhuang documents, words and images, ritual spaces and divine guidance and so on. I want to argument how this panoramic mural reproduced the visual field of Mount Wutai. On the other hand, since it is a divine guidance, I consider how the pilgrimage path was visualized and how to show the understanding and perception of the laity around the holy site.


ZHANG Shubin

    Zhang Shubin, Doctor candidate,Department of Art History, the Advanced School of Arts and Humanities, China Academy of Art 中国美术学院. He is engaged in research projects related to Buddhist art study, Visual Culture and Art Communication Studies and the history of Chinese art. Especially the relationship between religion and civilization process, Buddhism, politics and the formation of a Buddhist sanctuary in Mount Wutai and its visual imagery in East Asian faith system. He has won a number of awards, including the National Scholarship Award and the 2nd Minsheng Art-history Award to name a few. He wrote Texts,Images and Rituals:An Iconological Study of Ksitigarbha Bodhisattva Belief in Dunhuang Area during Tang and Song Dynasty; Construction and replication of Sacred Space: focus on the transmission of Manjusri-Mount Wutai Worship in East-Asia during the medieval of China, and so on.