An examination of Chinese pre-modern visual media, its influence on landscape ideology, aesthetics and relationship to landscape experience
In landscape history, visual media have played and are still playing very important roles in landscape design. Visual media work not only as tools in analysis, decision making and design presentation in landscape design process, but also more importantly as paradigms which influence landscape ideology and aesthetics. In contemporary landscape design and education, visual media has been gradually separated from profound landscape experience, especially via perspective-based drawing. The need to rethink perspective-based visual media, and some new insights on landscape experience became the context and motivation of this research. Through the study of three important visual media in pre-modern China landscape history (before the 20th century): map, landscape painting, and visual illustrations in prints, I attempt to highlight the influence of these visual media on Chinese landscape ideology, aesthetics and the development of landscape design profession. The strong connection between these pre-modern visual media and landscape experience is a central issue of this research. Via an exploration of spatiality, temporality and bodily experience in these pre-modern visual media, I aim to link pre-modern visual media and landscape experience to contemporary landscape theoretical discourse. Finally, through a comparative study on engaged seeing in Chinese pre-modern visual media and journey in landscape experience, I attempt to identify the performative feature of them and potential of connecting visual media and landscape experience.