A.B., Occidental College
Professor, History of Art
Buddhist Art and Iconography, Modern Japanese Art
OFFICE: Loria 653
TEL: 203.432.2682

Mimi Hall Yiengpruksawan received her Ph.D. in Japanese Art from the University of California at Los Angeles in 1988. She has taught at Yale University since 1990. In her research and writing Yiengpruksawan focuses on Buddhist art and iconography with emphasis on political and social perspectives in the analysis of devotional imagery and ritual. She is currently working on two books that look at the Buddhist cultural productions of early medieval Kyoto from perspectives that encompass environmental factors and the impact of transmarine exchange linking Heian Japan to Wu Yue, Northern Song, and Liao as revealed in the primary record. The first book in the series, Art and Catastrophe in the Japanese Middle Ages, currently under contract with Brill, takes up the role of exogenous determinants—epidemic disease, supernovae, a spike in the number of seagoing Chinese traders coming ashore along Japan’s western seaboard—in the emergence of an iconographically and artistically innovative Buddhist visual culture in Kyoto at the turn of the second millennium.

Selected Publications
Hiraizumi: Buddhist Art and Regional Politics in Twelfth-Century Japan (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1998).

Buddhist Art Treasures from Nara. With Michael Cunningham and John Rosenfield (Cleveland: Cleveland Museum of Art, 1998).

“Catching the Last Bus: Yoshiaki Shimizu and the Art of Creative Digression,” in Gregory P. A. Levine, et al, editors, Crossing the Sea: Essays on East Asian Art in Honor of Professor Yoshiaki Shimizu (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2012).

“The Interstitial Buddha: Picturing the Death of Sakyamuni,” Yale University Art Gallery Bulletin, Yale University Art Gallery Bulletin 2007.

“The Eyes of Michinaga in the Light of Pure Land Buddhism: A Japanese Case Study in Art and Illumination.” In Matthew Kapstein, ed., The Presence of Light: Divine Radiance and Transformative Vision. (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2004).

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