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The Colors of Japan

by John Bester

  • ISBN: 9784770025364
  • ISBN10: 477002536X

The Colors of Japan

by John Bester

  • List Price: $35.00
  • Binding: Hardcover
  • Publisher: Kodansha Amer Inc
  • Publish date: 02/01/2001
  • ISBN: 9784770025364
  • ISBN10: 477002536X
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Description: There are eight characteristic Japanese colors: red, blue, green, brown, black, white, silver, and gold. These colors have been representative of Japanese culture and aesthetics for centuries, recurring again and again in everything from the most everyday utensils to the highest objects of art.

Wooden bowls painted with red lacquer can be found dating to as early as 10,000 B.C. In the medieval period, the titles of aristocrats were routinely displayed with color, and court ladies were subject to strict rules for combining the color of their clothing to match the seasons. Even today, kimonos and tea bowls still respect the traditional customs for color use according to season and occasion.

The physical environment of a country also has a distinct influence on its culture. This book presents not only art objects but also natural scenery, revealing the variety of Japanese source material and the influence of natural colors such as bamboo, woods, moss gardens, and autumn leaves.

While the photos show the variety of Japanese material culture, the text provides the historical and sociological insight, indicating the richness and importance of color in Japanese life.

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