Available Lectures


From the 16th century onwards, the fetching of Asian art to Europe had a widespread influence on both taste and style. These colourful and exotic items made from such a diverse range of materials and embodying remarkable craftsmanship, not only brightened up the interiors of houses and businesses but they led to the development of similar materials and stylistic changes to what was also made in Europe. Silks and other fabrics, porcelain, ivory, jades, wood carvings, lacquer ware, silver, cloisonné and bronzes, were all quickly in very great demand.

Much of the decoration of these objects was drawn initially from the religions of Asia - Buddhism and Daoism as well as the Confucian philosophy and stories from literature. Meaningless to most Europeans, these wonderful images were nevertheless appreciated for their unique nature and colour. Later, specific designs and shapes were sent from Europe to be copied and this eventually led to a true fusion of the fundamentals of Asian and European art and design. Stylistically it also led to movements such as 'chinoiserie', 'japonism' and of course 'art nouveau', the latter having its roots in the everyday iconography used in China and Japan.

Many other materials and even consumables such as spices and tea had an enormous effect on the customs and trade of all European lives as well as increasing levels of prosperity dramatically.

Often involving hazardous journeys with great risk to the individuals involved in this trade, there was a great appetite for all things Chinese, Indian and Japanese. Among other things, this eventually led to the growth of the mighty English East India company and the burgeoning British Empire in Asia.

All of the lectures shown below are approximately one hour in duration but can be extended when required. They can also be woven together in combinations that are suitable for study/special interest days or half-days.

Some lectures are available in 35mm slide form for traditional projection and ALL lectures are available in Digital form - see the legend against each lecture.

A synopses of all lectures is available on the next page.




Click here for Lecture Synopses