Persica Centropa:

Cosmopolitan Artefacts and Artifices in the Age of Crises,



FWF Elise Richter Programme (V-995)

Project Leader: Dr. Yuka Kadoi

Scientific Assistant: Anton Matejicka


PERSICA CENTROPA seeks to redefine what used to be called ‘Persian art’—cultural artefacts that became predominantly associated with medieval and early-modern Iran and West Central Asia—while reframing it as an alternative narrative of aesthetic thinking that evolved in Central Europe during the first half of the twentieth century. Spanning from the declining years of the Habsburg empire to the emergence of new nation states within its former territories after 1918 and the devastation of World War II, this four-year project maps out the network of collecting and interpreting Persian objects and images against a backdrop of the socio-political upheaval of a once-thriving cosmopolitan cultural region. 


February 2024

We are pleased to announce the publication of Collecting Asian Art: Cultural Politics and Transcontinental Networks in 20th-century Central Europe, edited by Markéta Hánová, Yuka Kadoi and Simone Wille (Leuven: Leuven University Press, 2024). Available as Open-Access (Collecting Asian Art – Leuven University Press (


May 2024

"Revisiting the Ideals of the East: World Arts through a geo-religious lens, ca. 1900", NOMIS Workshop: Critical Dislocations: Art, Geography, Method, Center for the Theory and History of Images (eikones), University of Basel, Friday 10 May 2024, 9am - 6pm. Further information: 


January 2024  

PERSICA CENTROPA is delighted to announce the appointment of Anton Matejicka as Scientific Assistant to join the team to launch our pilot-project, 'Ex libris Strzygowski: how his theory of world arts was formulated', from January 2024. This project intends to make an inventory of the unique off-print collection from the library of the Vienna School professor Josef Strzygowski, currently housed at the University of Vienna Library, but also to make use of this inventory scientifically, so as to trace the formation process of his history of world arts.