An Introduction to the AAHP Webinar Series: Archaeology and Art History in Southeast Asia


About the webinar

How well do you know your neighbours? In this introductory lecture, we set the stage by giving an overview to the archaeology and art history in Southeast Asia, from ancient times to the recent past. Southeast Asia is characterised by its remarkable diversity – in both continental and archipelagic landscapes, cultures and languages. We start by examining why and how this region has become a hotbed of human migration over the past 50,000 years, giving rise to the major cultural traditions that we know today. We then turn our focus sharply into the 1,000 years – the time of the great empires – and how they interacted with each other over time. We will move to the pre-colonial period and look at how historical evidence has helped us understand several Southeast Asian cultures over time. Finally, we will analyse the impact of colonialism and Islam across this region and identify where the legacy remains today. We will browse through the main artistic and architectural inventions of the different polities presented, and see how the exogenous philosophies and influences shaped the art and material culture of Southeast Asia, introducing the rich and varied topics addressed in this Webinar Series.

For more information on the webinar series, click here.

About the Speakers

Dr Hélène Njoto is a French-Indonesian art and architecture historian, currently the representative of Ecole française d’Extrême-Orient (EFEO) in Jakarta. She has a PhD in Art History from EHESS (Paris) and an MA from Sorbonne. Her dissertation, which addressed early modern Javanese architecture, won two publication grants from the musée du Quai Branly and from the Institut des Inscriptions et Belles Lettres (Flora Blanchon Prize) in 2020. She directed the 2018 Art History and Archaeology International Field School in Trawas, East Java, an ongoing research collaboration between Pusat Penelitian Arkeologi Nasional (ARKENAS) and ISEAS. In her new collaboration between EFEO and ARKENAS, she focuses on Javanese art and architecture (material culture) history from the early Islamic period onwards (15th to 18th c.) in Java. She is the editor of ISEAS’ Temasek Working Paper Series and is a member of Archipel and Berkala Arkeologi editorial teams.

Dr Noel Hidalgo Tan is from Singapore, and is the Senior Specialist in Archaeology at the Southeast Asian Ministers of Education Organization Regional Centre for Archaeology and Fine Arts (SEAMEO SPAFA) in Bangkok. At SPAFA, he oversees the centre’s programmes related to Southeast Asian Archaeology. He graduated with a PhD in archaeology from the Australian National University and a MA in archaeology from Universiti Sains Malaysia, specialising in rock art. He is the editor of the SPAFA Journal and runs the Southeast Asian Archaeology resource page.


This webinar will be delivered online entirely. You can join the webinar at the specified date and time using devices (computer, phone, or tablet) with internet connection.

Please register here to receive your unique link for joining the webinar.

Limited spaces only, register early to avoid disappointment.

To join the webinar,
1. Install the Zoom client onto your computer or download the app on your mobile device.
2. Click on the unique link in your email.

If you have questions for the panellists, please key in your questions via the Q&A, stating your name and affiliation. The moderator will field them to the panellist during the Q&A session.


Jul 06 2021


10:00 am - 11:30 am