The Arts of China and Korea

Online course

+44 (0)20 7942 2000

The V&A collection of later Chinese art and Korean art is one of the most extensive in the world and forms the focus of this course. Court objects of lacquer, textiles, cloisonné and enamels will be juxtaposed with literati paintings, carvings and ceramics for the domestic and global markets.

Scroll down to read more about this course.…

You can learn from our world-class experts wherever you are, whenever suits you: watch lectures live or view the recording later in your own time. You can experience the full breadth and depth of the V&A's collections with more than 40 hours of study over 12 weeks. Learn at your own pace: lecture recordings and study materials, lecture notes, copies of the presentations, and additional study materials are available in our secure Microsoft Teams environment for up to 12 weeks after the course ends, so you'll never miss a thing. And finally, join the conversation: share your perspective with your fellow students, and support each other in your further enquiries outside of class time.

course photo
Portrait of Course Leader Dr Helen Glaister

Course Leader
Dr Helen Glaister

Dr Helen Glaister is an art historian specialising in Chinese Ceramics and Decorative Arts. Helen has been Course Director since 2006 and previously worked at the British Museum, has lectured for Birkbeck College, the British Library and is Senior Teaching Fellow at SOAS, University of London.

I really enjoyed this course. I have been interested in this subject matter for some time and it is good to be able to have an in depth course like this available when I have time to attend. Previous V&A Academy Online Course Attendee

Course overview

The V&A collection of Chinese art is rich in ceramics, textiles, furniture and decorative arts from the Qing dynasty (1644-1911) to the present. Court arts reflect the fashion and taste of the Manchu rulers who both looked to the Chinese past and engaged with artistic currents originating beyond their borders. The complex relationship between China and the West during this period is evident through trade goods, diplomatic gifts and visual culture, offering insights into the transformation of China in the modern age.

From early gold crowns of the Silla to later ceramics, lacquer and textiles, the second part of this course will explore the material culture and visual arts of Korea. Cultural and political shifts in the twentieth century are evident in photography, fashion, design and craft production from Seoul to Pyongyang. Contemporary collecting at the V&A reflects the continuing role of art and design in the formation of East Asian identities.


V&A Academy Online. A learning environment you can trust.

V&A Academy Online courses are built using the latest Microsoft software. Tune in to expert lectures live, or catch up later on demand. Download handouts and presentations. Join the discussion in a secure, closed class environment, wherever you are.

Enrol now

Online course: The Arts of China and Korea

8 January 2024 - 25 March 2024


Call to book +44 (0)20 7942 2000

Need help enrolling? Talk to the admissions team:

+44 (0)20 7942 2000

Open 10.00 - 13.00, Monday to Sunday (closed 24-26 December)

Related events