Dr. Matteo Compareti of Capital Normal University in Beijing lectures via Zoom on so-called Sino-Sogdian funerary monuments as part of the China Westward conference

China Westward Conference – Dr. Matteo Compareti (Capital Normal University, Beijing)

Presented by the Fairbank Center—and generously supported by the Committee on Inner Asian and Altaic Studies, the Department of History of Art and Architecture, the Department of South Asian Studies, the Harvard FAS CAMLab, and the Harvard China Fund—China Westward: Reimagining the Interwoven Material and Cultural Histories of China, Central Asia, and the Himalayas (October 14 – 15, 2023) was organized by Leonard W.J. van der Kuijp, Professor of Tibetan and Himalayan Studies, and Eugene Y. Wang, Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Professor of Asian Art, together with 2022-23 An Wang Fellows Chai-Yee Leow and Li Shuai and PhD students Michael Norton and Sophie Xiaofei Lei. The weekend-long conference featured six panels and 18 lectures exploring various understandings of ancient interactions between China and the “Western Regions” through art, religion, ritual, and astrology—and providing new insights into early Chinese civilization and its global context in the process.

Dr. Matteo Compareti of Capital Normal University in Beijing joined China Westward via Zoom to give his lecture as part of the conference’s first panel, Transmission, Exchange, and Diffusion: Insights from Tibet, China, and Sogdiana. He presented on his paper, “The Artistic Production of the Sogdians in China: New Researches and Identifications,” which focusses on so-called Sino-Sogdian funerary monuments, a crucial means of studying and understanding the culture, art and religion of the Sogdians in Central Asia. The paper specifically means “to call attention to problematic deities and religious scenes whose identification has been puzzling scholars for a long time.”

Watch the full talk via the Vimeo embedded video below or on YouTube.