The Elegant Other: Cross-cultural Encounters in Fashion and Art

Western culture became a major influence on Japan after Yokohama Port opened up the country to the world in 1859, but Japan also had much to offer the West. While Meiji Era (1867-1912) Japanese became interested in Western lifestyle choices and fashion, Japonism — the study and influence of Japanese art — boomed in Europe, with collectors seeking out ukiyo-e prints, ceramics and Japan-inspired works.

This exhibition — a showcase of 100 dresses and accessories from the Kyoto Costume Institute and 100 items drawn from other museums and private collections — comprises paintings, photographs and handicrafts that highlight the different notions of "beauty" that developed through cultural exchange. (Yukari Tanaka)