March 1st, Jeehey Kim

Visual and Material Perspective On East Asia is proud to present Jeehey Kim, Postdoctoral Instructor, Department of Art History, University of Chicago, this Friday, March 1st . Please notice the unusual time of the event: 5pm at CWAC 156.

Here are out speaker’s title and abstract:

 “Commemorating the Dead through Photography in East Asia.”

 “One can find ancestral portrait paintings of East Asia in museums, exhibitions, and even antique shows on television. Then, where are funerary portrait photographs to be found? They are at home, funerals, annual memorial services, as well as in national memorial halls, courts and protests on street. My project started with a question of “when and how was the commemorative use of portrait painting transformed into photographic medium in East Asia?” This paper draws upon my dissertation titled “Death and Photography in East Asia: Funerary Use of Portrait Photography,” which compares the practice of funerary photo-portraiture in China, Korea, Japan, Taiwan, and Vietnam by examining the basic concepts underpinning it. I argue that funerary portrait photographs signal the absent presence of the deceased, testifying to the existence of invisible ancestral spirits. The first part of this paper explores how the commemorative use of one’s likeness gave birth to funerary portrait photography, while the rest addresses the ways in which funerary portrait photography structures national identity and collective memory in East Asia.”

(The event is sponsored by the Center for East Asian Studies, University of Chicago)

If you need assistance, please contact Dongshan Zhang:

Thank you.

Best wishes,



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