Effect Of Japanese Art On Western Art

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Ukiyo-e is an art form that originated in Japan during the Edo period. It lasted from 1603 to 1867. The Edo period began after the ruler Hideyoshi had died in 1958. Tokugawa Ieyasu, who was the most powerful man in Japan, did not respect Hideyoshi’s successor Hideyori, because he wanted to become absolute ruler of Japan. He won that by defeating Hideyori loyalists in the battle of Sekigahara in 1600. He was then appointed a Shogun in 1603 by the emperor, and made his government in Edo, Tokyo. Since he wanted ultimate power, he had a tight reign over Japan. He got control of more land, and limited foreign trade. The two countries he had relations with were the English and Dutch, however he was against Christianity. After defeating the Toyotomi clan in 1615, he had no more rivals and Japan was once again peaceful. The Samurai warriors began learning about literature, philosophy and the arts instead of just martial arts. In 1633 under the new Shogun Iemitsu, trade was limited to only China and the Netherlands in one port. Foreign books were forbidden. Now during the Genroku era (1688 - 1703), in the Edo period, domestic trade and agriculture improved. New art forms flourished, like kabuki and ukiyo-e. Kabuki is a traditional Japanese drama in which male actors play both male and female parts. Ukiyo-e is an art movement in Japanese painting in which scenes and objects from ordinary life were depicted. It is also referred to as “Paintings of the Floating World” which depict sumo wrestlers, kabuki actors, beautiful women and landscapes. It is made with woodblock prints, and each woodblock is carved to print a different color. Ukiyo-e has had an enormous impact on painting all over the world. The term used for the influence of Japanese art on French and English art is Japonism, or Japonisme. It inspired impressionist, Art Nouveau and Cubist painters. Even some very famous
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