This large and lavish volume is the catalog of an important art exhibition at the New York Guggenheim Museum that ran from Jan. 20 to April 19 this year. Since the show itself is not traveling to other venues, this excellent account of its purposes and content is now all that remains of one of the most thoughtful and rewarding art shows of the year.

It documents how American art from the 1860s to the 1980s sometimes evolved through an integration of various Asian sources, tapped through the processes of appropriation and integration.

As voiced by Alexandra Munroe, senior curator of Asian Art at the Guggenheim who, in addition to writing the catalog, conceived and oversaw the show itself, the aim was to identify, explain and celebrate those many American artists "whose minds were changed by what they read, saw and imagined Asia to be."