Richard Bullen is an Associate Professor of Japanese art history at the University of Canterbury.
HIs principal areas of research are Japanese art and aesthetics, and East Asian art collections in New Zealand. With Associate Professor James Beattie (Victoria University of Wellington Te Herenga Waka) he completed a project funded by the Royal Society of New Zealand on the Rewi Alley Collection at Canterbury Museum. Their website catalogues all 1,400 objects in the collection: http://www.rewialleyart.nz.
In 2017, their co-edited book New China Eyewitness: Roger Duff, Rewi Alley and the Art of Museum Diplomacy (2017) was published by Canterbury University Press, and was long-listed for the Ockham New Zealand book awards. With James, he recently curated the exhibition Wars, Revolutions and Social Change: 60 Years in China, University of Canterbury Library, December 2022–April 2023, using items from Canterbury Museum and the Macmillan Brown Library.
He was a 2019 CAA-Getty International Scholar. Richard is currently leading a project that studies the artworks made by Japanese held at the Featherston Prisoner Of War Camp in World War Two, and with Dr Tets Kimura (Flinders University) those made in the Australasian prisoner of war and civilian internment camps which held Japanese people.
He has also published widely on Japanese aesthetics and the aesthetics of the Japanese tea ceremony. He is on the editorial board of the New Zealand Journal of Asian Studies. In addition to his Research Fellowship at Canterbury Museum, he is an Honorary Curator at MTG Hawkes Bay, and a Global Academic Fellow, University Museum and Art Gallery, The University of Hong Kong.