Friday Feb 6th Quincy Ngan

Quincy Ngan

Ph.D. Candidate, University of Chicago, Department of Art History

Qiu Ying and the Significance of Pigments in Chinese Painting

Chinese painting has long been regarded as a tradition that rejects the use of color but treasures ink and brushwork. Complicating this conventional wisdom, this dissertation argues that, in this tradition, there are painters who utilize the socio-economic and art-historical meanings of pigments to augment their painting techniques and to enhance the meaning of pictorial motifs and subject matter. To make this argument, this dissertation takes the use of azurite blue and malachite green in the paintings by the sixteenth century painter Qiu Ying (ca. 1498-1552) as a case study; then, it situates his use of the two pigments in the long and understudied history of color in Chinese painting.

During this talk, I will conduct close reading of several paintings with three goals in mind: The first goal is to illustrate the major argument in this dissertation. The second is to discuss my methodological approach in studying pigments and its significance. The third is to invite a dialogue between traditional Chinese painting and recent scholarship on the materiality of color in Euro-American and Latin-American arts.


Friday, Feb 6th, 4:30-6:30pm, CWAC 157

Persons with disability who may need assistance, please contact Tingting Xu:



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