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School of Visual Art and Design

Faculty and Staff Directory

Amanda Wangwright

Title: Associate Professor / Art History
School of Visual Art and Design
Phone: 803-777-4231
Office: McMaster, 317
Amanda Wangwright


Ph.D. University of Kansas
M.A. University of Oregon
B.A. University of Missouri, Kansas City


  • Twentieth-Century Chinese Art
  • Gender Studies, Chinese Feminism, and Women Artists of the Republican Period
  • The Nude and Depictions of the Body in Modern Chinese Art
  • The Professionalization of Art in Early Twentieth-Century China (Societies, Exhibitions, and Print Culture)
  • Interconnections between Chinese Modernist Art, Xihua (Western-Style Painting) and Global Modern Art
  • Modern Art, Nationalism, and Propaganda in Wartime China


History of Asian Art

History of Japanese Art
History of Chinese Art
Twentieth-Century Chinese Art

Modern Art in Asia
Women in Chinese Art
Buddhist Art in East Asia
Politics & Propaganda in 20th Century Chinese Art
Tradition & Transformation in Modern Chinese Art

Art and Culture of Japan (Honors Course)

Research Projects

Amanda S. Wangwright has published on twentieth-century Chinese art, its transnational patronage networks, conceptualizations of gender and the body, and unfolding canonization. Her book, The Golden Key: Modern Women Artists and Gender Negotiations in Republican China (1911-1949) (Brill, forthcoming), investigates artists’ public personas and feminist artistic practice, as well as the wartime developments that led to their exclusion from the canon of modern Chinese art. Professor Wangwright’s other recent publications similarly reconstruct the transitions and transactions of the art world in this pivotal period in Chinese history: including a book chapter demonstrating how the female nude became the visual model of the national reform movement, and an article reframing the war years as a period of vibrant artistic exchange and transnational patronage. An article in progress contends that a still life by the modernist painter Qiu Ti (1906-1958) served as a complex visual rebuttal to the socio-political pressures she encountered in the leadup to the Second Sino-Japanese War (1937-1945).

Current research projects include a monograph on the modern art of wartime China (c. 1937-1949), which explores the factionalism and fanaticism of wartime China's art community and addresses topics such as the anxiety of national erasure as pictured in romanticized depictions of the minorities of the Chinese interior, artist-led campaigns soliciting wartime support from international audiences, and the collaborative art activism of the anti-Japanese resistance movement. An additional research project focuses on the portrayal of artists in popular culture and the modern professionalization of art in in early twentieth-century China. A separate line of research analyzes Republican-period depictions of the male nude in natural landscapes in connection with shifting perspectives of modern masculinity.


  • The Golden Key: Modern Women Artists and Gender Negotiations in Republican China (1911-1949) (Brill, forthcoming).
  • “For William Fenn’s Elegant Enjoyment: Western Patronage in Wartime China (1937-1949) and the ‘Discovery’ of Modern Chinese Art.” The Register Vol. VIII, No. 5 (2018): 22-39.
  • “The Sick Man of Asia and the Anatomically Perfect Woman: Remodeling Republican China’s (Body) Image through the Visual Arts.” In Visualizing the Body in Art, Anatomy, and Medicine since 1800: Models and Modeling, edited by Andrew Graciano, 181-200. Routledge, 2019.
  • “Contemporary Chinese Art Since 1976.” In Oxford Bibliographies in Chinese Studies, edited by Tim Wright, n.p. New York: Oxford University Press, 2014.
  • “Double Vision: The Culture China Overseas Chinese Women’s Invitational Exhibition (Exhibition Review),” SECAC Review 16, no. 5 (2015): 661-664.


  • “Reforming Nation while Performing Celebrity: Women Artists in 1920s Shanghai,” College Art Association Conference, Chicago, IL, 2020.
  • “The Nude Portrait of Mr. Xu Langxi (1884-1961) and the Beauty of the Natural Body,” Southeastern College Art Conference, Chattanooga, TN, 2019.
  • “Saving the Nation through Collaboration: Chinese Public Art Projects before and during the Second Sino-Japanese War (1937-1945),” Southeastern College Art Conference, Birmingham, AL, 2018.
  • “The Nude Mona Lisa: Elevating Art and the Nation through the Anatomical Perfection of Figure Painting in Republican-Period China (1911-1949), Views from Sunflower Terrace: Celebrations in Honor of Marsha Haufler, University of Kansas, 2017.
  • “Modeling the Ideal: Studying the Body and Reforming the Nation from the Art Studio in Republican-period China (1911-1949),” Asian Studies Faculty Research Presentation, University of South Carolina, 2017.
  • “Guan Zilan and the Popular Press: The Creation of a Professional Identity through Public Performance,” 75th Annual Association for Asian Studies Conference, Seattle, 2016.
  • “The Sick Man of Asia and the Anatomically Perfect Woman: Reshaping China’s (Body) Image One Artist’s Model at a Time,” Art, Anatomy, and Medicine since 1700 Symposium, Columbia Museum of Art, South Carolina, 2016.
  • “Embattled Careers in Wartime China: Chinese Women Artists Go to War,” College Art Conference 2016, Washington, D.C., 2016.
  • “Guan Zilan and China’s Early 20th-Century Popular Press,” Faculty Research Forum, School of Visual Art and Design, University of South Carolina, 2015.
  • “Chinese Women Artists at War,” Distinguished Speaker Series, Confucius Institute, Emory University, 2015.
  • “Nude Ambition: Qiu Ti and the Symbolic Significance of the Nude in Republican China,” Guest Speaker, Fox Center for Humanistic Inquiry, Emory University, 2015.
  • “Parallelism and Performance in the Artist Biographies of China’s Republican-Period (1911-1949) Press,” Guest Speaker, Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art, University of Oregon, 2015.
  • “Misty Vistas and Dreamy Minority Women: Primitivism, Nationalism, and Painting in Wartime China,” Southeastern College Art Conference 2014, Ringling College of Art + Design, 2014.
  • “‘For William Fenn's Elegant Enjoyment’: Western Reception of Chinese Art during the Sino-Japanese War,” Southeast Conference/Association of Asian Studies 53rd Annual Meeting, Duke University, 2014.
  • “‘In Our History Lies the Secret of Our Future’: The Syncretic Arts of Modern Japan” Four-part lecture series in conjunction with Japan in the Jazz Age exhibition, Columbia Museum of Art, South Carolina, 2014.
  • “Making Waves: A Painting Society’s Radical Efforts to Modernize the Art Scene in 1930s Shanghai,” Guest Speaker, Department of Oriental Culture and Art, Nankai University, China, 2008.

Recent Awards and Honors

  • Metropolitan Center for Far Eastern Art Studies Institutional Grant, 2020.
  • Book Manuscript Finalization Support, College of Arts and Sciences, University of South Carolina, 2020.
  • Provost Humanities Grant, University of South Carolina, 2016.
  • Bill and Carol Fox Center for Humanistic Inquiry Post-Doctoral Fellowship, Emory University, 2014.
  • Library Research Travel Grant, Duke University, 2014.
  • Louise Wallace Hackney Fellowship for the Study of Chinese Art, American Oriental Society, 2010.
  • Metropolitan Center for Far Eastern Art Studies, Kyoto, Japan, 2009.
  • Summer Research Fellowship, Office of Research and Graduate Studies, University of Kansas, 2009.
  • Kress Foundation Department of Art History Dissertation Research Travel Grant, University of Kansas, 2009.
  • Harvard-Yenching Library Travel Grant, Harvard University, 2009.



Challenge the conventional. Create the exceptional. No Limits.