The Visual and Material Perspectives on East Asia Workshop (VMPEA) is oriented toward the study of visual and material objects, built environments, and the relationship between text and image from East Asia. It explores a plethora of visual and textual materials across a variety of historical periods and geographic locations in order to understand socio-political, cultural, and historical aspects of China, Japan, and Korea. While being based in art history, the Workshop is committed to interdisciplinary inquiries and perspectives, including but not limited to archaeology, anthropology, architecture, literature, religious studies, cinema and media studies, and museum studies. With visual evidence as the basis of our inquiries, our workshops are opportunities for collaborative examination and discussion of these vital materials. As such, we offer speakers the opportunity for open-ended exploration and discussions of the presented materials, in addition to the traditional formats of pre-circulating papers and respondents. This kind of collaborative “thinking through materials” is crucial to visual and object-based study, and we are renowned even among scholars outside of the University for our rigorous discussion sessions. While the Workshop invites outside speakers as an opportunity to encourage intellectual exchanges between students and established scholars, graduate students from the University are prioritized in our program. In addition, the Workshop is a forum for joint-workshops, interdisciplinary and cultural events related to East Asian topics.


Please contact the coordinators of the workshop or leave a comment/post for more information in regards to the workshop!

2023-2024 Co-coordinators:

Yan Jin (yanj@uchicago.edu)

Alan Longino (longino@uchicago.edu)

*all the in-person events will meet on selected Wednesdays from 4:45 to 6:45 pm in CWAC 152 unless noted. For the online events or those who would like to join us remotely, we will send out the registration links to the zoom meetings prior to the events.


Also, we welcome you to subscribe to our listserv here. We will send out information about our events through it.


  1. Dear workshop coordinators, I was wondering if the workshop has a mailing list? If yes, could you please add my email? I’d like to receive information of the workshop. Many thanks!

    • Thank you for your interest in the VMPEA Workshop! I was informed that you were already added to the listserv!

  2. Would it be possible to add my email to the list? I am really interested in this workshop! Thanks for your consideration and your valuable time in reading this.

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