Recomended Titles

I recently came across a few very interesting books that I wanted to share with you.

1. THREADS OF SILK AND GOLD:ORNAMENTAL TEXTILES FROM MEIJI JAPAN
 McDermott, Hiroko T. and Pollard, Clare, Oxford, 2012.
thredFor years I have tried to convince clients, collectors  and dealers of the merits of late 19th/early 20th century Japanese textiles, some made for export. These are very accomplished embroideries, often with resist-dye silks and velvets, tapestry works,  and appliqué – used for large textiles but also for  kimonos we so much admire. I believe they were  and  still are not appreciated so much because they date from a relatively late period but one forgets that many of these techniques are no longer used today and have become rare. The textiles and kimonos once used are no longer in demand. If you find an artist in Japan who still works with these techniques, his/her works are often more expensive than the older version.
I believe this is the first English language book  on this subject.
So enjoy this book!
2. Something on a controversial subject — because not so much understood by Westerners. It does not have to be controversial!
ORIGINAL INTENTIONS:ESSAYS ON PRODUCTION, REPRODUCTION, AND INTERPRETATION IN THE ARTS OF CHINA
Pearce, Nicholas & Steuber, Jason, Gainesville 2012.
2This book deals with the old question of authenticity – in Chinese culture everything has a precedent,  and paintings, sculpture and other works are produced, reproduced, replicated not so much to fake but to render something  according to  and in hommage to earlier masters. This approach goes back all the way to antiquity when jade and bronze pieces from earlier periods were replicated. Later emperors excelled in producing wares imitating such earlier renditions.
There is a fundamental difference between faking to cheat – detested by the Chinese scholar and artist, and copying a work of art; the difference is clearly expressed in the language of Chinese connoisseurship –intention is everything.  The books deals with ceramics, paintings, sculptural pieces and paintings.
3. Ending with a Japanese artist who was born at the beginning of the Meiji period (1868-1912) when Japan opened up to the West and western ideas, western perspective.
KAMISAKA SEKKA:RINPA TRADITIONALIST, MODERN DESIGNER
Marks, Andreas, Petaluma, 2012
3Kamisaka Sekka (1866-1942) was one of Japan’s leading artist, designer and art instructor. He led the revival of the 17th century Rinpa style while at the same time  creating modern designs  in ceramics, lacquer ware, textiles and woodblock prints, combining Japanese and Western design influences.  I especially admire his woodblock prints which can be bold and elegant at the same time. The Clark Center for Japanese Art and Culture in Hanford, California  had an exhibition about Kamisaka Sekka in summer  2012 featuring his paintings, scrolls and prints.
3b
Read and Enjoy!
Elisabeth and Natasha
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