Topics

How Japan crafted its modernization

Jun 4, 2014

How Japan crafted its modernization

by C.B. Liddell

When Japan ended its isolation in the mid-to-late-19th-century, it had lots of disadvantages compared to the other major powers. But one distinct advantage that its isolation had preserved was its craft industries and the skills of its craftsmen.

The 'Great Wave' that reached the West

May 28, 2014

The 'Great Wave' that reached the West

by Matthew Larking

Ukiyo-e prints could be found in Europe from at least 1795 at the Cabinet des Estampes at the Bibliotheque Nationale in Paris. It was not until the 1850s, however, when trade between Japan and Europe began to flourish, that the craze for things ...

Nicolas Buffe's show is a dream come true

May 28, 2014

Nicolas Buffe's show is a dream come true

by C.B. Liddell

Being swallowed by an enormous anime canine is the kind of experience you are only likely to have in a dream — perhaps after eating too much cheese before bedtime — and this is the theme of Nicolas Buffe's exhibition, a surreal dream that ...

Before the vividness of France came the simplicity of Holland

May 14, 2014

Before the vividness of France came the simplicity of Holland

by C.B. Liddell

It must be something of a Faustian bargain buying a Post-Impressionist painting for a record-breaking price. In 1987, Yasuo Goto, president of Yasuda Fire & Marine Insurance Co., bought Van Gogh’s “Vase with Fifteen Sunflowers” (1888) for $39 million. Perhaps due to that daring ...

Shiseido's Tsubaki-kai questions the nature of art

May 7, 2014

Shiseido's Tsubaki-kai questions the nature of art

by Stuart Munro

Now in its seventh incarnation, Shiseido's most recent Tsubaki-kai group of artists is the first to be formed since the Great East Japan Earthquake and tsunami of 2011, and it has added to its concerns the meeting of personal preoccupation with art's wider relevance ...

A powerful look at 'exotic' and 'primitive' artworks

Apr 30, 2014

A powerful look at 'exotic' and 'primitive' artworks

by C.B. Liddell

The “Power of Images” exhibition at the National Art Centre Tokyo is nothing less than an assault on the senses — a barrage of exotic and vivid anthropological oddities from the collection of the National Museum of Ethnology in Osaka. Garish, fantastic, ghoulish and ...

Tradition is woven into modern Japanese fashion

Apr 30, 2014

Tradition is woven into modern Japanese fashion

by Sachiko Tamashige

Boosted by Japan’s remarkable economic growth and the modernization of the country’s lifestyle in the latter half of the 20th century, contemporary Japanese fashion has soared to the heights of the global fashion scene while, at the same time, the textile industry related to ...