- Publications of Note
From Postwar to Postmodern: Art in Japan, 1945–1989: Primary Documents. Edited by Doryun Chong, Michio Hayashi, Kenji Kajiya, and Fumihiko Sumitomo. Museum of Modern Art, New York, 2012. 440 pages. $40.00, paper (distributed by Duke University Press). With its origins in a curatorial exchange program, this volume contains “edited translations of source materials relating to the visual arts … together with newly commissioned contextual essays and other materials” (p. 10). It presents a range of texts, including art criticism, artists’ writings, manifestos, and roundtable discussions. “The editors concentrated on choosing influential texts that discuss works and issues current at the time of the writings, with an orientation toward the critical avant-garde” (p. 16).
Japan’s Modern Divide: The Photographs of Hiroshi Hamaya and Kansuke Yamamoto. Edited by Judith Keller and Amanda Maddox. J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles, 2013. 224 pages. $49.95. These two photographers were influenced early in their practice of photography by the Shinkō Shashin style of the 1930s. Their work ultimately moved in different directions: “Yamamoto could think and work ‘globally,’ expressing provocative ideas with the threat of censorship that had prevailed before the war. Hamaya, on the other hand, clung to the ‘real’ and the representation of traditional rural life on the mountainous back coast of Japan.” This volume explores “the many appositions of Japanese life: the modern and the traditional, the urban and the rural, the occidental and the oriental” (p. 9).
Otaku Spaces. By Patrick W. Galbraith; photographs by Androniki Chris-to dou lou. Chin Music Press, Seattle, 2012. 237 pages. $20.00, paper. This book “aims to establish a broad context for otaku culture and to provide concrete examples” (p. 18). It includes expert interviews along with profiles, interviews, and photographs of 20 men and women identified as otaku. “We are not saying gaze at the exotic and celebrate diversity for the sake of itself. We are arguing for differences that make a difference. In opening otaku rooms, we hope to also open up spaces to think otaku” (p. 19).
Vers une modernité architecturale et paysagère: Modèles et savoirs partagés entre le Japon et le monde occidental. Edited by Nicolas Fiévé and Benoît Jacquet. Collège de France, Institut des Hautes Études Japonaises, Paris, 2013. vii, 330 pages. €30.00, paper. Seven chapters in this volume are [End Page 550] in French, two are in English. Together they explore “the (re-)discovery of Japanese architecture and gardening by both Western and Japanese Orientalists [at the end of the Meiji period]. … the dissemination of the hitherto undiscovered built forms and conceptual thinking allowed several generations of architects and landscape architects to take part in the creation of new architectural and landscape expressions” (back cover). Contributions (in addition to the editors) are Kevin Nute, Taji Takahiro, Ken Tadashi Oshima, Yola Gloaguen, Jordan Sand, and Uchiyama Naoko.
Portugal, Jesuits, and Japan: Spiritual Beliefs and Earthly Goods. Edited by Victoria Weston. McMullen Museum of Art, Boston College, Boston, 2013. 147 pages. $60.00, paper (distributed by the University of Chicago Press). Issued in conjunction with an exhibition of the same title, this book “takes as its premise the meaning of fine objects in the twin contexts of commercial trade and ecclesiastic use” (p. 11). The five essays in this volume take inspiration from folding screens depicting Japanese encounters with Portuguese traders.
Freiheit und Nation in Japan: Ausgewählte Aufsätze 1936–1949. By Ma ruyama Masao; edited by Wolfgang Seifert. Iudicium Verlag, Munich, 2012. Volume 1: 169 pages; €15. Volume 2: 182 pages; €15. These two volumes present German translations of eight essays published by Maruyama Masao between 1936 and 1949. Each volume also includes a glossary of persons, concepts, events, and institutions.
Japanese Travellers in Sixteenth-century Europe: A Dialogue Concerning the Mission of the Japanese Ambassadors to the Roman Curia (1590). Edited by Derek Massarella; translated by J. F. Moran. Hakluyt Society, London, 2012. xxii, 481 pages. $119.95 (distributed by Ashgate). In 1582, four Japanese boys were sent by the visitator of the Jesuit missions in the East Indies to pay obeisance to the pope. While the group was not a formal embassy...