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Title: Art, industry and design : the role of Japanese and Anglo-Japanese textiles in Victorian Britain, 1862-1900
Author: Kramer, E. A.
Awarding Body: The University of Manchester
Current Institution: University of Manchester
Date of Award: 2004
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This thesis employs the model of textile culture to illuminate the artistic interaction between Japan and Great Britain as well as the economic, cultural, political and gender issues underpinning this interaction between the years of 1862 and 1900. The chapters move beyond a stylistic study of Japanese and Anglo- Japanese textiles by considering them in relation to a variety of contexts and artistic processes, including international exhibitions; museum, educational and private collections; the domestic interior; travel; their representation in British painting and their inspiration in British textile design and manufacture. When possible, case studies of designers and artists who not only appropriated Japanese elements in their work, but also visited Japan, are called upon to determine the extent to which such an experience inspired their work as opposed to the degree to which these visitors imposed their preconceived ideas on Japanese art, people and culture, and compare travellers' reception of Japan to perceptions of Japan commonly held in Victorian Britain. A number of theories strongly inform this thesis, including material and visual culture, consumption, postcolonial, and gender theories. In considering the role of Japanese and Anglo-Japanese textiles in Victorian British art, design and industry, the first chapter looks at the exhibition and reception of Japanese textiles and clothing at the international exhibitions, beginning with the London 1862 Exhibition, and asks how these events shaped British perceptions of Japanese national identity and contributed to the feminisation of its culture. The second chapter demonstrates how these perceptions informed the representation of Japanese textiles and kimono in British painting as well as how these textiles stylistically inspired painting. The third chapter contrasts the ways in which Japanese textiles provided ideas for new designs to the ways in which designers produced Anlgo-Japanese patterns fitting Victorian consumers' ideas of Japan. The fourth chapter enhances this discussion by comparing the production of Anglo-Japanese textiles for the luxury to those affordable to middle class consumers. This chapter considers the role of textile manufacturing firms in disseminating interest in the Japanese style. The final chapter discusses how female consumers employed Japanese and Anglo-Japanese textiles in the decoration of the domestic interior and argues that when women and Japan became further involved in the masculine- or European-dominated world of commerce, women through their consumption and Japan through its production, the artistic value of Japanese decorative art and women's taste was depreciated
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available