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Painting Edo: Selections from the Feinberg Collection of Japanese Art

Painting Edo: Selections from the Feinberg Collection of Japanese Art

$ 35.00

A sweeping and lavishly illustrated overview of a transformative era in Japanese art-making

By Rachel Saunders and Yukio Lippit

Published in March 2020

ISBN: 9780300250893
164 pages; 9 3/4 × 11 1/2 in.
215 color & b/w illustrations
Published by Harvard Art Museums
Distributed by Yale University Press

Japan’s Edo period (1615–1868) witnessed the arrival of peace after centuries of warfare, together with economic prosperity, population growth, and increased urbanization. The arts of the period flourished, reflecting and inflecting these fertile conditions. Painting Edo: Selections from the Feinberg Collection of Japanese Art explores this rich visual culture, highlighting works from an unparalleled collection to showcase the masters of various Edo schools and lineages. Beautiful illustrations punctuate the catalogue’s essays: Yukio Lippit situates the works within a broad cultural history of early modern Japan, and Rachel Saunders focuses on a single artist, offering fresh perspectives on the late “bird-and-flower paintings” of Sakai Hōitsu. Together, these essays unpack the literary, artistic, and cultural histories that form the basis for how these masterful works would have been received in their time—and for how we can best understand them today.

Rachel Saunders is the Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Curator of Asian Art at the Harvard Art Museums. Yukio Lippit is the Jeffrey T. Chambers and Andrea Okamura Professor of History of Art and Architecture, Harvard University.

The related exhibition, Painting Edo: Japanese Art from the Feinberg Collection, was on display at the Harvard Art Museums from February 14, 2020 to Summer 2021 (the museums are temporarily closed; end date subject to change). Explore more at

Painting Edo: Japanese Art from the Feinberg Collection was made possible by the Robert H. Ellsworth Bequest to the Harvard Art Museums, the Melvin R. Seiden and Janine Luke Fund for Publications and Exhibitions, the Catalogues and Exhibitions Fund for Pre-Twentieth-Century Art of the Fogg Museum, the E. Rhodes and Leona B. Carpenter Foundation, the Thierry Porté Director’s Discretionary Fund for Japanese Art, and the Japan Foundation. The accompanying print catalogues were supported by the Harvard Art Museums Mellon Publication Funds, including the Henry P. McIlhenny Fund. Related programming is supported by the M. Victor Leventritt Lecture Series Endowment Fund, Harvard University’s Edwin O. Reischauer Institute of Japanese Studies, and the Department of History of Art and Architecture Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Fund for Art and Architecture.

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