Research for Mapping Asia

Hi guys,


The following are some links that could be useful under our topic of Mapping Asia.


The Silk Road (Connection between Europe & Asia)

The Silk Road does not only consist of silk trade, it also have a wide range of products traded such as tools, religious objects, artworks, precious stones and more. It is connected to the Spice Route (Maritime Silk Road) through other trade and connecting routes which provide merchants with a wide range of goods available to trade (Land and Sea).

This route also enable merchants to have intellectual and cultural exchange where knowledge about crafts, technologies (paper making/printing press), art, languages, religion (Buddhism, Hinduism) and more are shared.


Incense Route

It is a network of land and sea trade routes that linked the Mediterranean world with Eastern and Southern sources of incense, spices and other luxury goods.



Traveling the Silk Road

Silk Road Saga

Travelling the Silk Road

Silk Road


Week 6

What is a family portrait? What are some famous family portraits? How would you take a family portrait now?


Family is a group of people related to one another by blood or marriage. While portrait is a painting, photograph, sculpture, or other artistic representation of a person, in which the face and its expression is predominant. Thus, family portrait is an image of faces that comprises of people who are closely/blood related to each other.


Based on some examples of famous family portraits, I realised that family portraits reflect the family’s relationship (between each member) and the hierarchy within it. It does not reflect all the good instead, it shows the nature of the family.


In modern days context, rather than going to a studio (which has a stiff atmosphere) I would take a family portrait at a place where my family usually gather and create lots of memories. In this way, I feel that it contains more meaning and this create additional memories to the place as well as to the photo.

Week 5

How have artists made us think about labor? Share with the class an image or a article that brings up this issue of labor.

Based on last week’s presentation on the portrayal of the Samsui women, artists present scenes of them at work where it showed how these women handled tough labour under weather conditions as they earn money to support their family abroad.   


Artists integrated materials such as granite or paints of different hue and tone to convey and depict the tedious life of labour. Through the perspectives of the different artists, it made me reflect on labour in the present and current context of how the society take labour workers for granted with thoughts that they are just doing their job and thus, only giving a little appreciation.


In conjunction to the SG50 celebrations, the Labour Movement released a collection of 50 Ways The Labour Movement Shaped The Workforce, which shows the milestones and improvement in labour force.

Week 4

How does Allan Sekula’s engagement with the sea, help us to think about trade in the 16th century? Link images or articles that you see relevant to this question or your reflections.

Allan Sekula’s Fish Story documentary on globalization engages his research with the sea where he mapped the world economy through the exploration of world maritime trade and the historical, sociopolitical connections among port cities.

His studies link to the history and beginning of trading where people from different countries gather at the port to trade for spices and other precious goods as well as the expedition of the oceanic trade routes to discover the unknown (countries).

Week 3

In week 3, we learned about Catherine of Austria and herkunstkammer. Who is a another female patron of the arts? As you reflect on this question, remember to link any images or textual sources to your journal posting that might relate to this question or your thoughts on it.

Another female patron of the arts is Empress Josephine de Beauharnais; the first Empress of the French, the first wife of Napoleon Bonaparte. She is the first female sovereign collector in France and her art collections consist of paintings, sculptures and porcelain.

Chateau de Malmaison

Chateau de Malmaison

The place where the Empress took residence in and had her art collections kept.

Josephine: The Rose of Martinique – Page 351


Week 2

How have your images of Africa changed after today’s class on African ivories?

Initially, my first image of Africa was poverty instead of their vibrant culture, as they are infamously known for it in the recent centuries. However, after today’s class, I was amazed by their history of craftsmanship with ivories and their knowledge and traditions in art aesthetics. Like any other countries, Africa has a rich history and mastery in art (culture) that is continuously brought till today in daily lives as well as in festivals.