On teaching modern and contemporary Southeast Asian art

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4 Scopus citations


This article reflects on the author's experience of teaching a course on Modern and Contemporary Southeast Asian art at Sotheby's Institute, Singapore, in the summer of 2010. The author uses pedagogy to engage methodological issues of the field-or finds methodological questions emerging in the teaching of this art. Key pedagogical and methodological problems discussed include: teaching modern and contemporary Southeast Asian art via modern and contemporary Euro-American art; dealing with the rift in teaching modern as opposed to contemporary Southeast Asian art (for instance, can one avoid teaching contemporary art in terms of the artist-as-brand?); and the critical value of using aesthetic judgement in the teaching of modern and contemporary Southeast Asian art. The demarcation of 'modern' and 'contemporary', and the origin and composition of 'Southeast Asian' art are also discussed. In offering possible solutions to these pedagogical/methodological problems, the essay advocates a theory-plus-practice, historical-and-contemporary approach to the teaching of the art of this region.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)467-473
Number of pages7
JournalThird Text
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jul 2011


  • Cheong Soo Pieng
  • Jogjakarta Art Fair
  • Nanyang
  • Southeast Asia
  • aesthetic judgement
  • contemporary
  • historical belatedness
  • historical forgetting
  • modern
  • pedagogy
  • social art history


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