L'Art Japonais

L'Art Japonais - vol. 1 - Cover damage
Adoption Amount: $850
Category: Preserve for the Future
Location: Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery Library

L'art japonais, Vol. 1

By Louis Gonse. Paris: A. Quantin, 1883.

Louis Gonse (1846-1921) was a French writer, art critic, and director of the Gazette des Beaux-Arts. He was also an early collector of Japanese art. In 1883 he organized an exhibition on the art of Japan and published his book, L’Art Japonais. Gonse was aided in much of his research by the Japanese art dealer, Tadamasa Hayashi (1853-1906) who was also instrumental in introducing Japanese art to Europe.

This book was the first serious work on the subject, making Gonse’s reputation as a specialist on Japanese art. L’Art Japonais had a profound influence on French “japonisme” and helped to fuel Western interest in Japan. It would be hard to overstate the importance of this work for the study and appreciation of Japanese art. The book includes many reproductions of Japanese paintings, tracing the development of the different schools.

The volume has 32 plates of which many are chromolithographs. There are numerous illustrations throughout the text as well. The Freer | Sackler Library’s copy is no. 1127 of 1400.

Condition and Treatment: 

This is Vol. 1 of a two volume, folio-sized set that is quarter bound in red leather. The leather is suffering from red rot. The front cover is detached.  Conservators will clean the spine and reline it with Japanese paper and airplane linen. The cover will be repaired and reattached to the binding.

Discover more about this book in our Catalog.