Happy Holidays from Smithsonian Libraries!

We wish you warmth and joy this holiday season! The book featured in this video is Tokaido gojusantsugi by Hiroshige Ando published in 1868. The translated title is 53 Stations of the Tokaido, a series of woodcut prints showing stations on the Tokaido road that linked Kyoto and Edo (now Tokyo). It is one of the many Japanese illustrated books from the Edo and Meiji periods that were scanned this year.

Newly Digitized: Japanese Illustrated Books from the Edo and Meiji Periods (1600-1912)

The Freer | Sackler Library of the Smithsonian Libraries have completed digitizing over 1100 volumes/41500 images from its collection of illustrated Japanese woodblock-printed books and manuscripts from the Edo and Meiji periods (1600-1912). The Libraries’ digitization project was generously funded by the Anne van Biema Endowment Fund.

Toriyama Sekien’s Spooky Parade

This post was contributed by Matt Alt. Matt is the co-founder of AltJapan Co., Ltd., a Tokyo-based localization company that specializes in producing the English versions of Japanese games, manga, and other entertainment. Together with Hiroko Yoda he is the co-author of Yokai Attack! The Japanese Monster Survival Guide, and the upcoming Japandemonium Illustrated: The Yokai Encyclopedias of Toriyama Sekien which features images from the Smithsonian Libraries volumes of Toriyma Sekien’s works. 

Meiji Designs and Japanese Craft Artists

This post was written by Reiko Yoshimura, head librarian of the Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery Library. As a result of the development of Japonisme in the 1860s, Japanese art and crafts became increasingly popular, especially in Europe. Following the Meiji Restoration (1868), the Japanese government began exhibiting a vast amount of art and craft objects in world expositions, namely, World’s Columbian Exposition (1893) and Paris expositions (1867, more »

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