Singapore University of Social Sciences

Southeast Asian Art in the 20th Century and 21st Century

Southeast Asian Art in the 20th Century and 21st Century (BAE205)

Applications Open: 01 April 2021

Applications Close: 15 June 2021

Next Available Intake: July 2021

Course Types: Modular Undergraduate Course

Language: English

Duration: 6 months

Fees: $2523 View More Details on Fees

Area of Interest: Education

Schemes: To be confirmed

Funding: To be confirmed

School/Department: S R Nathan School of Human Development


The term Southeast Asian Art" in the title of BAE205 came into common usage in the late 20th century. Although Southeast Asia is sometimes thought of as an entity that is culturally distinctive, given its importance in world trade before the 20th century, its boundedness is often called into question. This module examines the production, reception, collection, display and exchange of Southeast Asian art, with “Southeast Asia” understood as (a) a collection of nation-states and (b) a transnational entity that is deeply connected to Asia and the rest of the world, shaped by trade, migration, colonisation and globalisation.

Level: 2
Credit Units: 5
Presentation Pattern: Every July


  • Introduction: What is SE Asian Art?
  • Modern and Contemporary Singapore and Malaysia
  • Video Screening / Art News Sharing
  • Modern and Contemporary Indonesia and Thailand
  • Modern and Contemporary Vietnam and the Philippines
  • Presentation of Online Exhibition

Learning Outcome

  • Analyse Southeast Asian art as a palimpsest, an overlay of generations of politics, trade and migration.
  • Identify key layers of the palimpsest, and to describe their genealogies.
  • Discuss the difficulties of separating the layers of the palimpsest.
  • Categorise Southeast Asian artworks on display in an exhibition.
  • Compare the various types of Southeast Asian artworks so categorised.
  • Question the ease of categorisation.
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