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A Brush With Animals [paperback]

Japanese Paintings 1700-1950

Robert Schaap

Japan has a long and rich tradition of using animal imagery in works of art. A Brush with Animals. Japanese Painting 1700-1950 gives an overview of Japanese animal painting, covering some 250 years, with an emphasis on works by artists of the naturalistic Shijô School. It illustrates the wonderful variety of animals that figure in Japanese iconography, including the 12 animals of the zodiac and many mythological creatures. The reader is thus taken on a tour through the animal kingdom, which is profusely illustrated with no less than 300 colour images. A selection of essays explains in great detail the stories and legends behind the animal imagery and provides background information on the practical aspects and social context of Japanese hanging scroll paintings. A useful tool for the collector and a delight for anyone sensitive to the beauty of Japanese art.
A Brush with Animals was selected from collections of members of the Society for Japanese Arts (private and museum collections), to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the Society. Many of the paintings are published here for the first time.

Haiku & Haiga

Moments in Word and Image

Ron Manheim

This bilingual (German/English) publication supports the exhibition Haiku & Haiga – Augenblicke in Wort und Bild – Japanische Rollbilder aus vier Jahrhunderten, held in Museum Schloss Moyland (Bedburg-Hau, Germany) in April 2006. This selection of beautiful Japanese scrolls shows the poetic power of the combination of the word and the image. The texts on all 78 exhibited objects are published in Japanese (in kanji and in transcription) as well as in German/English translation, supplemented with comments. Contributions by specialists among which Prof. Dr. Ekkehard May, Dr. Anna Beerens and Dr. Dan McKee.

John Stevenson

Taisō Yoshitoshi (1839-1892) was the most popular woodblock artist of his day. Customers lined up on the day of publication for his prints of historical characters and beautiful women. His career, which introduced subtle psychological observation to the artistic and representational world of ukiyo-e, straddled the tumultuous late Edo and early Meiji periods. Yoshitoshi was fascinated by the supernatural, and some of his best work concerns ghosts, monsters, and charming animal transmutations. Yoshitoshi’s strange tales presents two series that focus on his depictions of the weird and magical world of the transformed. The first series dates from the beginning and the second from the end of the artist’s abbreviated career, encapsulating his artistic development. One Hundred Tales of Japan and China ( Wakan hyaku monogatari) of 1865 is based on a game in which people told short scary ghost tales in a darkened room, extinguishing a candle as each tale ended. New Forms of Thirty-six Strange Things ( Shinken sanjūrokkaisen) of 1889-92 illustrates stories from Japan’s rich heritage of legends in more serene and objective ways. The book opens with a study of Japanese ghost prints and analysis of Yoshitoshi’s changing treatments of the genre, and reproduces three rare paintings by the artist. This is Yoshitoshi at his most whimsical and imaginative.

This title is now only available as a paper back with ISBN 9789004337374.

Hokusai and His Age

Ukiyo-e Painting, Printmaking and Book Illustrations in Late Edo Japan

Edited by John Carpenter

This profusely illustrated volume, which collects essays by a distinguished roster of specialists in Japanese art, presents a wide range of current scholarship on the Edo artist Katsushika Hokusai (1760–1849) and his immediate artistic and literary circles. Achieving worldwide renown for his dramatic landscape print series such as the Thirty-six Views of Mount Fuji, Hokusai also excelled in book illustration, erotica, and privately commissioned woodcuts called surimono. Less well known, Hokusai was a highly accomplished and prolific painter who produced not only pictures of courtesans of the pleasure quarters, the normal stock-in-trade of an ukiyo-e artist, but a prodigious output on historical and legendary themes. This volume provides new insights into all these diverse aspects of the polyvalent artist’s corpus.
Contributors: Asano Shugo, Gian Carlo Calza, John T. Carpenter, Timothy Clark, Doris Croissant, Julie Nelson Davis, Roger Keyes, Kobayashi Fumiko, Kobayashi Tadashi, Kubota Kazuhiro, Naito Masato, David Pollack, John M. Rosenfield, Timon Screech, Henry D. Smith II, and Tsuji Nobuo.
Published in cooperation with: The International Hokusai Research Centre, University of Venice, Sainsbury Institute for the Study of Japanese Arts and Cultures Art, Research Center Ritsumeikan University, Kyoto.

Oliver Impey and C.J.A. Jörg

Japanese export lacquer 1580-1850 is the first full treatment of lacquerware made to European demand, its transportation and the lacquer market in Europe as well as the effect of lacquer and its use in a European context. Trading patterns and its use are described in detail, based on the documentary evidence of Europeans in the Far East, on notes kept by the Portuguese in Japan, on the important and comprehensive archives of the Dutch East India Company (VOC) and to a lesser extent and for a shorter period, of the English Honourable East India Company, as well as on contemporary comments and inventories within Europe.

The Koto

A Traditional Instrument in Contemporary Japan

Henry Johnson

The koto is a unique Japanese musical instrument. It has a history in Japan of over 1200 years and today does much to represent Japan's traditional past. This book examines this fascinating instrument in terms of its physical form, manufacture and instrument types, its performance traditions and social organisations, and its contexts of performance. Each of these aspects is explored in detail, providing ways of understanding the place of this traditional instrument in contemporary Japan. This well illustrated volume is the first in English to examine the koto in such depth. It brings together in one volume a detailed study of this remarkable instrument.

Integral to this study is a look at the social organizations of koto performance, and how they regulate and influence the transmission of the instrument and its music. Emphasis is placed on the internal structures of performing traditions, as well as ‘inside’ and ‘outside’ perspectives that are important in establishing one’s place as a player, Johnson also examines the koto and the significance of its main performance contexts, beginning with the role of the player and of mediated contexts. He demonstrates how different music traditions have used and devised notations systems as an additional means by which traditions identify themselves. Also included in the book is an examination of scales, tunings and music genres, as well as the instrument’s idiomatic language of music ornamention.

Printed to Perfection

Twentieth-century Japanese Prints from the Robert O. Muller Collection

Edited by Amy Reigle Newland

Robert O. Muller can be considered the most important collector in the world of 20th century Japanese prints. He amassed over 4500 designs, tracing back the artistic developments of the past century to the Meiji period (1868-1912).
His holdings, now in the Arthur M. Sackler Gallery of Art in Washington D.C., include the finest possible examples of artists specialized in the portrayal of female beauty such as Hashiguchi Goyô (1880-1921), Itô Shinsui (1898-1972) and Torii Kotondo (1900-1976), the earliest and best works of the two major landscape artists Kawase Hasui (1883-1957) and Hiroshi Yoshida (1876-1950) as well as numerous works by other, less famous artists providing a comprehensive and fascinating overview of the Shin hanga ('New Print') movement.
Robert O. Muller's exquisite taste and critical attitude has resulted in a collection in the finest imaginable condition. The Arthur M. Sackler Gallery of Art staged the first major exhibition from this collection in the months of November and December of 2004.
This catalogue accompanies the first exhibition from the donation to the Arthur M. Sackler Gallery of Art of over 4000 prints by the American collector Robert O. Muller, held November 6 2004-2 January 2005.

Visions of Japan

Kawase Hasui's Masterpieces

Kendall H. Brown

Following on the success of the catalogue raisonné – Kawase Hasui: The Complete Woodblock Prints – published by Hotei Publishing in 2003, Visions of Japan: Kawase Hasui’s Masterpieces brings together in a single volume one hundred of the artist’s most celebrated prints. Fully illustrated, this publication includes annotated descriptions for each work, as well as two essays on Hasui’s life and work by Dr. Kendall H. Brown.
Kawase Hasui (1883-1957) is considered the foremost Japanese landscape print artist of the 20th century, and he is most closely associated with the pioneering Shin-hanga (New Prints) publisher Watanabe Shōzaburō (1885-1962). Hasui’s work became hugely popular, not only in his native Japan but also in the West, especially in the United States. His valuable contribution to the woodblock print medium was acknowledged in 1956, a year before his death, when he was honoured with the distinction of ‘Living National Treasure’

Paul van Riel and Liza Dalby

Any first time visitor to Japan will be struck by that most beautiful symbol of its ancient culture: the kimono. This book contains a selection of the numerous encounters photographer Paul van Riel had with people wearing kimono all over Japan. Although the popularity of the kimono has dwindled somewhat the last twenty five years, the national garment of Japan is still deeply rooted in Japanese culture, as these photographs testify. In the introduction Liza Dalby describes the kimono's transformation from daily clothing to formal wear over the vourse of the 20th century. Her personal experiences give us a glimpse of the meanings the kimono has for the geisha.


Poetry & Image in Japanese Prints

Charlotte van Rappard-Boon and Lee Bruschke-Johnson

Surimono (lit. ‘printed object’) are privately published prints inscribed with a dedication or poem that reflects upon everyday themes. This catalogue includes more than 150 illustrations of prints drawn from the splendid Amsterdam Rijksmuseum collection. It also contains in-depth essays discussing the history of surimono and the subjects depicted in the prints, which incorporate seasonal references and classical themes. Most of the poems on the selected prints have been translated into English. This publication is an important reference work in the study of surimono.
Surimono-Poetry and Image in Japanese Prints accompanied an exhibition held at the Amsterdam Rijksmuseum in 2001.