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History of japanese art / Penelope Mason; rev. by Donald Dinwiddie

Main Author Mason, Penelope Secondary Author Dinwiddie, Donald Country Estados Unidos. Edition 2nd ed Publication Upper Sadle River : Pearson - Prentice Hall, cop. 2005 Description 432 p. : il. ; 30 cm ISBN 0-13-117602-1 CDU 7(091)(520)
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Item type Current location Call number Status Date due Barcode Item holds
Monografia Biblioteca Fernão Mendes Pinto
BFMP 7(091)(520) - M Não requisitável | Not for loan 368728
Total holds: 0

Enhanced descriptions from Syndetics:

Now with full color throughout, this book presents a comprehensive, extensively illustrated, and absorbing overview of Japanese art--from the Joman period (10,500 B.C.E. to 300 B.C.E.) through World War II.

Table of contents provided by Syndetics

  • Introduction
  • 1 The Birth of Japan: The Joman and Yayoi Periods and the Kofun Era
  • 2 Encounter with China and Buddhism: The Asuka, Hakuho, and Nara Periods
  • 3 New Beginnings and the Formulation of Court Culture: The Heian Period
  • 4 Samurai Culture and the Coming of Pure Land and Zen Buddhism: The Early Feudal Period
  • 5 A Turbulent Transition: The Momoyama Period
  • 6 Peace and Stability with Centralized Control: The Tokugawa, or Edo, Period
  • 7 After Feudalism: The Modern Period
  • Glossary
  • A Reader's Guide to the Arts of Japan

Reviews provided by Syndetics


This book can be highly recommended as a very good overview of the major Japanese visual arts. Mason (Florida State) has painstakingly and thoroughly investigated the extensive literature; the book could function in many areas as a reference work. Especially welcome is the latter part of the book, which includes at least the first few decades of the 20th century, unlike those Japanese art histories that suddenly end around 1850. The writing is scholarly but not pedantic; Mason's style is clear, and she eschews the rarely used and esoteric terminology with which some scholars confound the reader. The illustrations, many in color, are of good quality. It is in the choice of illustrations that one might differ with the author. Two examples: Sesshu, perhaps the most profound of traditional painters, is represented by three black-and-white prints, one so small it barely hints at the genius of its creator. Hiroshige, as great as any of the woodblock print artists, a master of color and form, is given only one black-and-white illustration, while page after page of screens (admittedly very beautiful) are shown in color. Nevertheless, this volume is a valuable addition to the literature. Advanced undergraduate and beyond. T. B. Hoffman; University of South Florida

Booklist Review

The story of Japanese art begins in the far distant past when the last Ice Age ended and the ocean rose, turning Japan into an island nation. As in many cultures, pottery was the region's first art form, but unlike Western Neolithic groups, the Japanese were creating pots before they discovered agriculture. The rise of rice cultivation coincided with the erection of large mounded tombs that were filled with ceramic haniwa, figures of men, women, dancers, soldiers, and animals. The first wave of foreign influences hit in the sixth century, when the art of China and the imagery of Buddhism captured the imagination of Japanese artists. Mason increases her pace and the depth of her narration as she embarks upon descriptions of temple architecture and statuary. Craftsmanship, materials, subject matter, and style all grow more sophisticated as artists create gorgeous painted silk scrolls, complex wooden bodhisattvas, exquisite ink paintings, screens, and woodblock prints. Mason explains how historical events influenced the art of each period, from the formulation of court culture to the samurai era, the peaceful Edo period, and onward. A dependable and generously illustrated introduction to Japan's elegant and finely honed art. While Mason's commentary is her history's strong point, 120 superb color photographs are the main attraction in Asian Art. Based on the Art Institute of Chicago's exceptional East Asian collection, this well-designed book documents masterpieces of Chinese, Korean, and Japanese art, including ceramics, sculpture, painting, and furniture. The vivid and instructive text covers different aspects of the art history of each culture, with a strong emphasis on the sacred arts of Buddhism. The aim here is to help readers "see" Asian art. To that end, the authors provide us with just enough background information for understanding the circumstances under which each piece was made, and just the right amount of aesthetic guidelines for sparking appreciation of the grace and perfection of these treasures. ~--Donna Seaman

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