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Late Hokusai (Paperback)

Society, Thought, Technique, Legacy

Hobbies & Lifestyle > Art > Art History World History > Asia

Imprint: British Museum Press
Series: British Museum Research Publications
Pages: 250
Illustrations: 170
ISBN: 9780861592319
Published: 15th July 2023
Casemate UK Academic

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This publication has been developed from ideas first presented at the international symposium Late Hokusai: thought, technique, society, held at the British Museum in May 2017. The symposium was organised to enable specialists in a range of disciplines relating to early modern Japan to view and consider the critically acclaimed exhibition Hokusai: beyond the Great Wave, then being presented at the British Museum. The exhibition brought together representative works by the artist Katsushika Hokusai (1760−1849) in the various media in which he worked – colour woodblock printed, woodblock-printed illustrated books, brush paintings on paper or silk, and brush drawings − that were produced between the age of 61 and his death aged 90. Building on the themes of the exhibition, authors from the UK, Europe, Japan and USA have engaged with late Hokusai from a variety of perspectives, both intrinsic and extrinsic to his life and works. Essays have been grouped within the broad categories of ‘thought’ -- Hokusai’s intellectual concerns and the ways his art brought these to life; ‘technique’ – how the artist pursued excellence in a wide range of media, within a commercialised art market; and ‘society’ – dimensions of cultural interaction and patronage. A fourth section on ‘legacy’ looks at how stories of Hokusai have been as much generated by 130 years of scholarship, as they have by his works themselves. Challengingly, faked paintings and printed works have both contaminated and supported those stories. This innovative approach provides new insights into the work of one of the world’s most celebrated artists and suggests many new avenues for Hokusai research.

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