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Namban: Art in Viceregal Mexico





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About the book:

"Namban" is one of the first known Eastern terms for Westernization, and it describes a century of Japanese trade with Europe in the 1500s and 1600s, trade that influenced Japanese society and art a great deal until the nation, in response, sealed its borders. Japanese art showing Namban influence is well known; here the antiquarian and historian Rodrigo Rivero Lake uses the term to identify Japanese influence in not just Western art of the same era, but New World, Mexican art. Lake sketches the shared history of Asia and Viceregal Mexico (then a European colony), which face one another across the Pacific. He follows the travels of the Galeons of Manila and Nao of China from Asia to Acapulco, and the Japanese schools of painting and artistic techniques introduced in the process. Every story takes readers deeper into the complex genealogies of Mexican Namban, to its roots, and eventually to evaluations of its technical, stylistic and iconographic characteristics. The Namban art of Mexico, while culturally revealing and relevant, is rare, and has long been little known: Rodrigo Rivero Lake shares his comprehensive expertise with generosity and style.

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