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A glimpse into the markets, crafts, and signage of early modern Japan Kanban are the traditional signs Japanese merchants displayed on the street to advertise their presence, represent the products and services to be found inside their shops, and lend a sense of individuality to the shops themselves. Created from wood, bamboo, iron, paper, fabric, gold leaf, and lacquer, these unique objects evoke the frenetic market scenes of nineteenth- and twentieth-century Japan, where merchants created a multifaceted world of symbol and meaning designed to engage the viewer and entice the customer. Kanban provides a tantalizing look at this distinctive fusion of art and commerce. This beautifully illustrated book traces the history of shop signs in Japan, examines how they were created, and explores some of the businesses and trades they advertised. Some kanban are elongated panels of lacquered wood painted with elegant calligraphy and striking images, while others are ornately carved representative sculptures of munificent deities or carp climbing waterfalls. There are oversized functional Buddhist prayer beads, and everyday objects such as tobacco pipes, shoes, combs, and writing brushes. The book also includes archival photographs of market life in "old Japan," woodblock prints of bustling marketplaces, and images of the goods advertised with these intricate and beguiling objects. Providing a look into a unique, handmade world, Kanban offers new insights into Japan's commercial and artistic roots, the evolution of trade, the links between commerce and entertainment, and the emergence of mass consumer culture. Exhibition schedule: Mingei International Museum, San Diego April 15-October 15, 2017
How West African gold and trade across the Sahara were central to the medieval world The Sahara Desert was a thriving crossroads of exchange for West Africa, North Africa, the Middle East, and Europe in the medieval period. Fueling this exchange was West African gold, prized for its purity and used for minting currencies and adorning luxury objects such as jewelry, textiles, and religious objects. Caravans made the arduous journey by camel southward across the Sahara carrying goods for trade "glass vessels and beads, glazed ceramics, copper, books, and foodstuffs, including salt, which was obtained in the middle of the desert. Northward, the journey brought not only gold but also ivory, animal hides and leatherwork, spices, and captives from West Africa forced into slavery. Caravans of Gold, Fragments in Time draws on the latest archaeological discoveries and art historical research to construct a compelling look at medieval trans-Saharan exchange and its legacy. Contributors from diverse disciplines present case studies that form a rich portrayal of a distant time. Topics include descriptions of key medieval cities around the Sahara; networks of exchange that contributed to the circulation of gold, copper, and ivory and their associated art forms; and medieval glass bead production in West Africa (TM)s forest region. The volume also reflects on Morocco (TM)s Gnawa material culture, associated with descendants of West African slaves, and movements of people across the Sahara today. Featuring a wealth of color images, this fascinating book demonstrates how the rootedness of place, culture, and tradition is closely tied to the circulation of people, objects, and ideas. These oefragments in time offer irrefutable evidence of the key role that Africa played in medieval history and promote a new understanding of the past and the present. Published in association with the Mary and Leigh Block Museum of Art, Northwestern University Exhibition schedule: Block Museum of Art, Northwestern University January 26 "July 21, 2019 Aga Khan Museum, Toronto September 21, 2019 "February 23, 2020 Smithsonian National Museum of African Art, Washington, DC April 8 "November 29, 2020
Hokusai: the blue, foam-crested wave rearing above Mount Fuji; the celebrated volcano idealized and reinventedby the artist in every nuance of view, season and painting; extraordinary bridges, the waterfalls of Japan, the contortions, costumes, gestures – the very breath of men, women, peasants, townsmen, warriors, artisans, leaping horses, birds, insects, fish, almost live on the ground on which they are painted – the countless imaginative drawings or the lively sketches done on the spot for the Manga, Hokusai’s record of shapes and forms drawn from life or imagined over time. With a body of work comprising more than 30,000 drawings and paintings, Hokusai (1760–1849) was the most prolific, varied and indisputably the most creative artist of old Japan. A universal genius in everything that constituted drawing and painting in his time, he practised all genres of ukiyo-e, those ‘images of the floating world’, as his contemporaries liked to describe their pleasures and their daily life.
This book traces the career of this child from a working-class district of old Tokyo, then known as Edo, evoking the special atmosphere of this great city and of Japanese life, when Japan – closed to foreigners – developed in a vacuum a powerfully original culture. Hokusai became one of the great masters of the woodcut, this ‘brush gone wild’, as he called himself, being rediscovered by the Impressionists and aesthetes at the end of the 19th century. He remains one of the greatest and – thanks to his personality – one of the most attractive figures of world art.
Detailed biographies describe the lives of twelve collectors of tribal art in Britain, active between 1770 and 1990. These men were rarely field collectors and only occasional travellers, but they were vigorous hunters, for whom the pursuit, handling and possession of such objects was what mattered. --The climax of the period of collecting from around 1880 to 1960 coincided with the maximum extent of Empire, when legions of explorers, missionaries, administrators, traders and military personnel brought back to Britain an inexhaustible quantity of exotic material.-- The sources for the collections included most of Africa, the Americas and the Pacific, as well as tribal societies in Asia. --The collectors described here - a interesting mix of highly individualistic, eccentric and sometimes avaricious men - could, and did, quite reasonably claim that they were saving ethnographic material for the future. This was partly based on the widely held notion that tribal cultures were disappearing and the idea that some museums were negligent and uninterested in ethnography. Several of the collectors eventually created museums themselves, most notably Pitt Rivers.-
The International Red Cross and Red Crescent Museum in Geneva, Switzerland, houses an extraordinary collection of works made by political prisoners. These works, made from whatever was available, were presented to visiting Red Cross/Red Crescent delegates. Spanning more than a century, they bear mute witness to the violent episodes that continue to ravage our planet, from Chile, Vietnam, Algeria, and Yugoslavia to Rwanda and Afghanistan. As a Lebanese inmate explained, "Creating is a way of acquiring freedom of expression. It gives us a means to say what we think while everything we see around urges us to keep quiet and to forget who we are."
A comprehensive presentation of Ai Weiwei's recent Public Art Fund exhibition Good Fences Make Good Neighbors, a powerful reflection on the global refugee crisis Internationally renowned Chinese artist and activist Ai Weiwei (b. 1957) transformed over 300 sites across New York City into a compelling, ambitious public art exhibition concerned with the global refugee and migration crises. Good Fences Make Good Neighbors (on view from October 2017 to February 2018) consisted of immersive large-scale sculptures for city monuments, fences on building facades and bus stops, and portraits of refugees and immigrants displayed on outdoor banners. This publication documents the extraordinary project from conception to final installation, giving a behind-the-scenes look at the research, preparatory drawings, planning, and fabrication that brought it to life. The book includes an in-depth interview with Ai Weiwei about the project's personal significance, an essay by curator Nicholas Baume, and statements from a wide variety of individuals-including Olafur Eliasson, David Miliband, Hans Ulrich Obrist, and Jorge Ramos, among many others-about their interactions with the artworks. As Baume asserts, "Ai Weiwei created a remarkable model for what great public art strives to be-emotionally engaging and politically resonant, conceptually and formally inventive yet broadly accessible."
Stanley Spencer was one of Britain's greatest twentieth-century artists. He became famous for two things: his celebration and immortalisation of his home town of Cookham in Berkshire - his 'heaven on earth' as he lovingly called it - and the fusion in his paintings of sex and religion, the heavenly and the ordinary. In 1915, Spencer left home to serve as a medical orderly in the Beaufort Military Hospital in Bristol. Aged 24, he had rarely stayed away overnight from home. For ten months he scrubbed floors, bandaged convalescent soldiers and carried supplies around the vast, former lunatic asylum. In 1916, he signed up for overseas duty in Macedonia, where he saw violent action up to the eve of the Armistice. Five years after the war, Spencer started making large drawings of a possible memorial scheme based on his wartime experiences. So extraordinary were his sketches, and so committed was he to realising them in paint, that the Behrend family became his patrons, funding a purpose-built memorial chapel at Burghclere, near Newbury. For five years he toiled, often on top of a giant scaffold, to produce the painted chapel now regarded as his masterpiece - one of the unsung artistic glories of Europe. Drawing on Spencer's own letters, illustrations and paintings, Paul Gough tells the story of the artist's journey from cosseted family life, through the drudgery of a war hospital and the malarial battlefields of a forgotten front, to his unique vision of peace and resurrection in Burghclere. The book locates Spencer's work alongside other soldier-artists of the time.
This beautifully illustrated survey examines the art and artists of the Edo period, one of the great epochs in Japanese art. Together with the imperial city of Kyoto and the port cities of Osaka and Nagasaki, the splendid capital city of Edo (now Tokyo) nurtured a magnificent tradition of painting, calligraphy, printmaking, ceramics, architecture, textile work, and lacquer. As each city created its own distinctive social, political, and economic environment, its art acquired a unique flavor and aesthetic. Author Christine Guth focuses on the urban aspects of Edo art, including discussions of many of Japan's most popular artists--Korin, Utamaro, and Hiroshige, among others--as well as those that are lesser known, and provides a fascinating look at the cities in which they worked.
Written in the spirit of Ovid (43 B.C-A.D. 17/18), this lively and erudite book traces the art derived from Ovid's "Metamorphoses "from the Renaissance up to the present day. The "Metamorphoses "has been more widely illustrated than any other book except the Bible; for centuries, great artists have drawn, painted, and sculpted its stories, the artists often responding not only to Ovid's work but to one another's in their depictions. Paul Barolsky, a specialist in Italian Renaissance art and literature, explores Ovid's unparalleled influence on the visual arts, discussing works by many of the most famous artists of the past six centuries. Broadly interdisciplinary, the new understanding of the themes of the "Metamorphoses" revealed here will appeal to those in the fields of Renaissance art, humanism, literature, history, and classics, among others. At once witty, entertaining, and profound, "Ovid and the Metamorphoses of Modern Art from Botticelli to Picasso" is a meditation on what words can achieve that images cannot, and conversely what images can show that words cannot tell.
From Neolithic painted petroglyphs, early paintings on silk, and landscapes by twelfth-century literati to the traditional handscrolls being produced today, Chinese painting has always had the power to enthrall. This magnificent book, written by a team of eminent international scholars, is the first to recount the history of Chinese painting over a span of some three thousand years. Drawing on museum collections, archives, and archaeological sites in China-including many resources never before available to Western scholars-as well as on collections in other countries, the authors present and analyze the very best examples of Chinese painting: more than 300 of them are reproduced here in color. Both accessible to the general reader and revelatory for the scholar, the book provides the most up-to-date and detailed history of China's pictorial art available today. In this book the authors rewrite the history of Chinese art wherever it is found-in caves, temples, or museum collections. They begin by grounding the Western reader in Chinese traditions and practices, showing in essence how to look at a Chinese painting. They then shed light on such topics as the development of classical and narrative painting, the origins of the literati tradition, the flowering of landscape painting, and the ways the traditions of Chinese painting have been carried into the present day. The book, which concludes with a glossary of techniques and terms and a list of artists by dynasty, is an essential resource for all lovers of, or newcomers to, Chinese painting. Three Thousand Years of Chinese Painting is the inaugural volume in a new series, The Culture & Civilization of China, a joint publishing venture of Yale University Press and the American Council of Learned Societies with the China International Publishing Group in Beijing. The undertaking will ultimately result in the publication of more than seventy-five volumes on the visual arts, classical literature, language, and philosophy, as well as several comprehensive reference volumes.
This volume introduces 161 examples from the greatest group of Meiji-period masterpieces in metal ever assembled, decorated in an astonishing variety of virtuoso techniques and drawing on a vast store of subject matter derived from Chinese and Japanese history, legend, and religion. It includes a vast and hitherto unknown bronze incense-burner by Suzuki Chokichi (1848-1919), an exquisitely decorated elephant incense-burner by Shoami Katsuyoshi (1832-1908), a large group of iron pieces decorated in gold by the Komai family of Kyoto, and ornaments commissioned from leading artists by the Ozeki company. Kano Natsuo (1828-98), the outstanding decorative metalworker of 19th century Japan, is represented by a table-screen in shibuichi, and there is another screen of Shoki the demon-queller, by his great contemporary Unno Shomin (1844-1915). The sculptural highlight of the entire Collection is a group by Otake Norikuni (b. 1852) representing the deity Susanoo no Mikoto receiving the sacred jewel.
From the New Yorker\u2019s inimitable first pop music critic comes this pioneering collection of essays by a conscientious writer whose political realm is both radical and rational, and whose prime preoccupations are with rock \u2019n\u2019 roll, sexuality, and above all, freedom. Here Ellen Willis assuredly captures the thrill of music, the disdain of authoritarian culture, and the rebellious spirit of the \u201960s and \u201970s.
Through a detailed look at twelve contemporary Chinese artists, this fascinating book offers a fresh assessment of the creative forces at work in a country whose economic, political, and cultural climates are of widespread and enduring interest. Viewed together, the featured artists, Cao Fei, Hao Liang, Hu Xiangqian, Liu Chang, Liu Shiyuan, Liu Wei, Liu Xiaodong, Qiu Zhijie, Tao Hui, Xu Qu, Xu Zhen, and Yang Fudong, reveal the complexities of their society. Their works, using a wide variety of techniques and media and drawn from local tradition and culture, highlight the current state of economy and ecology in China, as well as the transformation of the relationship between the city and the countryside. The word bentu means "the native soil," but in reference to contemporary Chinese art, the term has come to signify the concept of a reconciliation between the "local" and the "global," yielding a rediscovery of identity; this notion has become a central preoccupation among artists, curators, and academics in China today.
River-cane baskets woven by the Chitimachas of south Louisiana are universally admired for their beauty and workmanship. Recounting friendships that Chitimacha weaver Christine Paul (1874-1946) sustained with two non-Native women at different parts of her life, this book offers a rare vantage point into the lives of American Indians in the segregated South. Mary Bradford (1869-1954) and Caroline Dormon (1888-1971) were not only friends of Christine Paul; they were also patrons who helped connect Paul and other Chitimacha weavers with buyers for their work. Daniel H. Usner uses Paul's letters to Bradford and Dormon to reveal how Indian women, as mediators between their own communities and surrounding outsiders, often drew on accumulated authority and experience in multicultural negotiation to forge new relationships with non-Indian women. Bradford's initial interest in Paul was philanthropic, while Dormon's was anthropological. Both certainly admired the artistry of Chitimacha baskets. For her part, Paul saw in Bradford and Dormon opportunities to promote her basketry tradition and expand a network of outsiders sympathetic to her tribe's vulnerability on many fronts. As Usner explores these friendships, he touches on a range of factors that may have shaped them, including class differences, racial attitudes, and shared ideals of womanhood. The result is an engaging story of American Indian livelihood, identity, and self-determination.
During much of the nineteenth century, paintings functioned as the Plains Indians' equivalent to written records. The majority of their paintings documented warfare, focusing on specific war deeds. These pictorial narratives-appearing on hide robes, war shirts, tipi liners, and tipi covers-were maintained by the several dozen Plains Indians tribes, and they continue to expand historical knowledge of a people and place in transition. War Paintings of the Tsuu T'ina Nation is a study of several important war paintings and artifact collections of the Tsuu T'ina (Sarcee) that provides insight into the changing relations between the Tsuu T'ina, other plains tribes, and non-Native communities during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Arni Brownstone has meticulously created renderings of the paintings that invite readers to explore them more fully. All known Tsuu T'ina paintings are considered in the study, as are several important collections of Tsuu T'ina artifacts, with particular emphasis on five key works. Brownstone's analysis furthers our understanding of Tsuu T'ina pictographic war paintings in relation to the social, historical, and artistic forces that influenced them and provides a broader understanding of pictographic painting, one of the richest and most important Native American artistic and literary genres.
For almost three-quarters of a century, the study of Plains Indian art has been shaped by the expertise, wisdom, and inspired leadership of John Canfield Ewers (1909-97). Based on years of field research with Native Americans, careful scholarship, and exhaustive firsthand studies of museum collections around the world, Ewers's publications have long been required reading for anyone interested in the cultures of the Plains peoples, especially their visual art traditions. This vividly illustrated collection of Ewers's writings presents studies first published in "American Indian Art Magazine" and other periodicals between 1968 and 1992. Tracing the history of the pictorial art of Plains peoples from images on rock surfaces to the walls of modern museums, the essays reflect the principal interests of this pioneering scholar of ethnohistory, who was himself a talented artist: the depiction of tribal life and ritual, individual war honors, and aspects of sacred power basic to traditional Plains cultures. Chapters are devoted to particular tribal arts--Blackfeet picture writing and Assiniboine antelope-horn headdresses, for example--as well as the work of particular artists. Ewers also traces interactions between Plains Indian artists and Euro-American artists and anthropologists. Available for the first time in book form, the influential cultural and historical studies collected here--together with all 140 illustrations that Ewers selected for them, including many now in full color--remain vital to our understanding of the Native peoples of the Great Plains.
A pioneer among Palestinian artists, Sophie Halaby was the first Arab woman to study art in Paris, subsequently living independently as a professional painter in Jerusalem throughout her life. She was born in 1906 in Kiev to a Russian mother and a Christian Arab father. Her family fled to Jerusalem in 1917 in the wake of the Russian Revolution. Her life was marked by violence and war, including the Arab Revolt from 1936 to 1939, the Nakba in 1948, and the Six-Day War in 1967. In response, Halaby drew a series of political cartoons criticizing British rule and Zionist goals; later in life, she followed the work of younger artists who supported the Palestine liberation movement. However, the political turmoil of her times is largely not depicted in her art. Instead, her work is a tribute to the enduring beauty of the landscape and flora of Jerusalem, often sketched in pen and ink or red and black chalk, and painted with egg tempera, oils, and watercolors. Schor's compelling biography shines new light on this little-known artist and enriches our understanding of modern Palestinian history.
A History of Chinese Art is a lavishly illustrated work covering the history of Chinese art from the Pre-Qin period (pre-221 BCE) to the early twentieth century in two volumes. Compiled by leading art historians at the Central Academy of Fine Arts in Beijing, the volumes offer a Chinese perspective on the rich artistic tradition that has flourished throughout China's long history, from ancient pottery and tomb painting to furniture, sculpture, ceramics, calligraphy and fine art. Discussion is supported by full-colour illustrations throughout, sourced from collections in China and around the world, including recent archaeological discoveries. A History of Chinese Art provides an introductory point of reference for those with an interest in Chinese history, culture and art.
"Major Reverence Book Series for American Indian Art!" Hardback, 2,000 biographical profiles, ca. 1800-Present, 1,000 illustrations (color and historic b & w), hallmarks. map. REVIEWS: ***** "The Bibles of Native Arts!" Dan Gibson, editor, Native Peoples Magazine "The volume will for decades remain a primary resource." Dr. Bruce Bernstain, Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of the American Indian "This is the first time that a comprehensive survey and databases for Indian artists have been done. It has been a long time in coming, and its impact will be significant for Indian artist adn collectors of Indian art for decades to come. Dr. Greg Cajete, University of New Mexico "THE reference books for Indian art." Ira and Dick Diestler "A real service to the Indian Art World." Al Anthony
Horses are very rare in Africa. The few to be found west of Sudan, from the lands of the Sahara and Sahel down to the fringes of the tropical forests, belong to the king, the chief warrior and to notable persons. Due to the dense humidity of the tropical rainforest and the deadly tsetse fly, only restricted numbers of horses survive. And yet rider and mount sculptures are common among the Dogon, Djenne, Bamana, Senufo and the Yoruba people. The Akan-Asante people of Ghana and the Kotoko of Chad produced a good deal of small casting brass and bronze sculptures. Some of the artists could barely even have caught a glimpse of a horse. This visually stunning book presents a wealth of African art depicting the horse and its rider in a variety of guises, from Epa masks and Yoruba divination cups to Dogon sculptures and Senufo carvings. In Mali, the Bamana, Boso and Somono ethnic groups still celebrate the festivals of the puppet masquerade. The final chapter of this book is dedicated to the art and cult of these festivals, which are still alive and well. It is not the habit of the African artist to provide intellectual statements for his work, yet his unique creative dynamic and far-searching vision does not conflict with that of his Western counterpart. It is fair to state that the African, who though not educated in Western art history, contributed his fair share to the shaping of modern art. Features works from museums in both Africa and Europe, including the Musee Royal de L'Afrique Central, Tervuren in Belgium; Afrika Museum, Berg en Dal, Netherlands; Musee du quai Branly, Paris; Museum Rietberg, Zurich; The British Museum, London; Museu National de Antologia, Lisbon and National Museum, Lagos, Nigeria.
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