1st Edition

Whistler and Artistic Exchange between Japan and the West After Japonisme in Britain

By Ayako Ono Copyright 2023
    158 Pages 30 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Ono examines cross-cultural artistic exchange between the West and Japan from the late nineteenth century to the early twentieth century.

    Studies of Japonisme have been dominated by searching out relationships of influence between artworks–trying to identify which specific works influenced a particular artist. Ono argues that a more holistic understanding of 'spillover effects' is necessary in fully comprehending the nuances of these relationships. She bases this argument on documents and works of art in the context of globalisation, looking at the relationships between James McNeill Whistler and others with their contemporaries in the Japanese artistic and literary worlds. This was a more complex two-way exchange than is often appreciated, with Western artists taking inspiration from (to them) new Japanese styles, while Japanese artists and writers were trying to craft a 'modern', more western-influences style to reflect the modern nation of Japan emerging onto the world stage after centuries of relative isolation.

    A fascinating analysis of the role of globalisation and cultural exchange in the development of new and hybrid artforms, that will be essential reading for scholars of this fascinating period in international art history.

    Introduction 1. An Introduction to James McNeill Whistler’s Work and Art Theory in Japan – from the Perspective of East–West Exchange, with Special Reference to Hayashi Tadamasa, Iwamura Toru, and Kume Keiichiro  2. James McNeill Whistler’s Introduction in Japan – Focusing on the Modern Japanese Literary World  3. Spread of Universal Beauty: James McNeill Whistler, Ernest F. Fenollosa, Kaneko Kentarō, and Charles Lang Freer 4. James McNeill Whistler’s Tonal Painting and mōrōtai  5. Conclusion: Nihonga for the World: Modern ‘nihonga’ and the ‘West (seiyō)’ and ‘Western Europe (seiō)’ as Relative Concepts  6. Postcript: Japanese Art Exhibitions in Britain from the Mid–Nineteenth Century to the Early–Twentieth Century


    Ayako Ono is Associate Professor in the Faculty of Education at Shinshu University, Nagano, Japan.