ISBN is

978-4-7700-2689-7 / 9784770026897

Snow, Wave, Pine: Traditional Patterns in Japanese Design

by

Publisher:Kodansha USA

Edition:Hardcover

Language:English

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About the book:

An important, but often overlooked, part of the world of Japanese arts and crafts is the array of beautiful, stylized motifs that have traditionally been used to decorate a huge range of objects. Snow, Wave, Pine takes a close look at some of the most classic of those patterns, enabling the reader to recognize and appreciate these motifs wherever they appear, and providing inspiration to anyone interested in design or arts and crafts.

The first half of the book introduces seventy-five important patterns, as depicted on a variety of objects. Seeing the "lotus blossom" or "flowing water" patterns, for instance, on antiques including brocaded kabuki robes, lacquerware trays, and metal sword guards throws into relief the patterns themselves, rather than the objects, making possible a new level of understanding and enjoyment. The informative text describes how each pattern arose, and the significance it had in terms of art, religion, and even politics. The reader has a sense of being empowered to look at any Japanese art, craft or design form with a new and educated eye.

The second half of the book shows a rich and dynamic selection of more than one thousand family crests. Crests are very stylized motifs whose variety and artistry are remarkable. With a minimum of lines, they are able to express the essence of such forms as a pair of facing crows with wings outstretched; the rounded back of a monkey viewed from behind as it sits hunched over, alone; or the elegant single counter-clockwise whorl. Despite being hundreds of years old, they are extremely modern in their sensibility.

Lavishly illustrated with over 450 color plates, and with text and photos alike by experts in the traditional Japanese arts, Snow, Wave, Pine is a treasurehouse of information for anyone interested in design forms or in Japanese culture.

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