Dear Sir/Madam, we invite applications from PhD students - and especially students following a combined Phd/art, music and / or sound art track - for a unique IIAS-CSEAS coordinated international Winter School. We will explore the theme of “mapping the aesthetics of urban life” in South, Southeast and Northeast Asia by examining how the Arts can contribute to the re-conceptualization of urban spaces.

Mapping the Aesthetics of Urban Life in Asia: A Dialogue with the Arts

IIAS-CSEAS Winter School 2016 in conjunction with the CSEAS Southeast Asian Seminar

25 - 30 January 2016

Application deadline
10 July 2015

Center for Southeast Asian Studies (CSEAS), Kyoto, Japan

The Winter School
This 6 day workshop set in the changing – yet highly historical and cultural – urban environment of Kyoto, will bring together three conveners – one cultural studies scholar, one artist/educator, and one architect - to guide a group of doctoral candidates from Asia and other regions to exchange on the role of the Arts in the (re)building of Asian cities. Two days will be set aside for fieldwork excursions within Kyoto.

The winter school’s conveners believe that the unprecedented wave of urbanization in Asia can potentially open new spaces of interventions, not only for architects, city planners and designers, but also for artists and intellectuals committed to stimulate public engagements. Artists do it through various modes of performativity ranging from urban art, literature, performances, music, filmmaking et al. One key question emerges from these interventions: how can the urban landscape of the city be a template to think about both modern and traditional aesthetics in Asia or challenge that distinction, and how are aesthetics constitutive of the Asian city?

By focusing in on different modes of urban-art interventions, including the role of sound-art in re-mapping the city, the re/usage of empty urban spaces and the city as a visual and creative spectacle, the January 2016 Kyoto winter school seeks to explore how arts and popular urban cultures can converge to act as agents of social inclusion in Asian cities.

Call for applications
For detailed information, the criteria and application form please surf to:

For enquiries about the IIAS-CSEAS Winter School 2016, contact Ms Martina van den Haak,

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The International Institute for Asian Studies (IIAS) is a research and exchange platform based in the university city of Leiden, the Netherlands. IIAS encourages the multidisciplinary and comparative study of Asia and promotes national and international co-operation. It acts as an interface between academic and non-academic partners including cultural, social and policy organisations.

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