About reading Chinese landscapes – Some thoughts on Zhao Mengfu (1254 – 1322)

10 July 2023, 18:30
Lecture by Prof. Kai Marchal, National Chengchi University (Taipei)

Taiwan Lectures on Chinese Studies, logo
Taiwan Lectures on Chinese Studies, logo
National Central Library von Taiwan, logo
Ludwig-Maximilians University Munich, logo
Bayerische Staatsbibliothek, logo

About the lecture

In the lecture Prof. Kai Marchal takes a philosophically sharpened look at the landscape paintings of the Chinese painter Zhao Mengfu (1254 – 1322). Zhao is one of the most famous exponents of the so-called scholars' painting, who went on to have a long-lasting impact on the further development of Chinese art history. It is frequently emphasised that in the course of his long career, a transition manifested itself from realistic representation to abstract, pure brushwork. By analysing a representative selection of his paintings, Prof. Marchal elaborates on some central features of Zhao's style and explores how philosophical and religious concepts of reality, pictoriality, meaning and emptiness have shaped the artistic practice of this painter. This will not least lead us to the question of how an aesthetic experience of the other is possible at all.

Moderation: Prof. Hans van Ess, Ludwig-Maximilians University Munich

Personal data

Kai Marchal teaches philosophy at the National Chengchi University at Taipei. Among his research interests, there are the history of Chinese philosophy, ethics and transcultural political theory. Together with Michael Hampe, he recently published the book “Weisheit. Neun Versuche” (Matthes & Seitz Berlin, 2021).

About the series of lectures

The lecture forms part of the international series of lectures "Taiwan Lectures on Chinese Studies" and is organised jointly by the National Central Library of Taiwan, the Ludwig-Maximilians University of Munich and the Bayerische Staatsbibliothek.

Information overview

Date10 July 2022, 18:30
VenueBayerische Staatsbibliothek, Friedrich-von-Gärtner-Saal, 1st floor
Ludwigstr. 16, 80539 Munich
Public transportUnderground lines U3/U6, bus lines 150/153/154, station/bus stop Universität
Bus line 100/153, bus stop Von-der-Tann-Strasse
RegistrationPlease register by e-mail to or by calling +49 89 28638-2115
The number of attendees is limited.
AdmissionAdmission is free.