By Gavin Blair
A visual journey through Zen’s influence on Japanese life, from calligraphy to the martial arts
Formed by a convergence of the Buddha’s teachings with Taoism and local tradition, Zen has had a profound impact on the art and culture of Japan. As a philosophy, Zen promotes a recognition of emptiness and impermanence. As an aesthetic, it is marked by striking simplicity and a reverence for space. It operates on the principle of wabi-sabi, the harmony found in all things transient and imperfect. Countless Japanese artists, artisans, and designers have engaged with the Zen tradition, their work the fruit of its wisdom.
Author Gavin Blair has spent nearly two decades as a writer and journalist in Japan. In these pages, he shows how Zen has found expression in all aspects of Japanese culture, be it the tea ceremony, origami, or bonsai. Gorgeous full-color photographs highlight the simple beauty of the Zen aesthetic, from the hanging noren curtains that adorn entrances and doorways, to the intricate craftwork of a wagasaumbrella. Together these images speak to the quiet power of Zen.
Above all, Zen is an invitation to contemplate the mind, to cultivate harmony with nature and ease through understanding. This book is for any reader who is curious about Japanese culture and the Zen tradition.
A Closer Look at the Old masters
A visual delight, and a designer's dream-the decorative details of great European paintings transformed into beautiful two-dimensional patterns
Richly embroidered robes. Intricate lace collars. Elaborately laid floor tiles. Delicately carved and modeled cornices and capitals. These are among the details of decorative art that the Old Masters lovingly rendered in their paintings, to establish a setting, convey a portrait subject's social status, or sometimes just enliven a scene. Together these details-so easy to overlook in the imposing harmony of draftsmanship, color, and composition that makes up a great painting-form a veritable history of ornament.
This inventive book plucks these decorative motifs from the background of paintings by masters like Bronzino, Fra Angelico, and Jacques-Louis David and transforms them into vibrant two-dimensional patterns. Seeing these patterns side-by-side with the original paintings deepens our appreciation of both. Pattern in Painting will be a resource for graphic designers, and a revelation for all art lovers.
By Jens Priewe
A masterful new edition of the classic guide to the wines of the world—and how they are made
Wine from Grape to Glass is the essential guidebook for wine lovers who want to understand how their favorite wines are grown, how they are produced, and how best to savor them. The first half of the book is devoted to the process of winemaking and wine appreciation. The mysteries of the vineyard and terroir, the grape harvest, fermentation, and aging are all explained in full, as are the intricacies of serving, tasting, and storing wine. The second half of the book examines the best wines of the world, country by country, in a level of detail that is satisfying without being overwhelming. More than one thousand color illustrations, including numerous maps, make this a visual as well as a textual guide.
This fourth edition of Wine from Grape to Glass is revised and updated throughout. It includes new sections on recent trends in winemaking—including rosés and natural wines—and expanded coverage of many winemaking regions, including Eastern Europe, the Middle East, South America, China, and Japan.
One Hundred Aspects of the Moon
A beautiful facsimile edition of the final masterpiece of ukiyo-e—strictly limited to 3,000 numbered copies
Yoshitoshi (1839–1892) was the last virtuoso of the Japanese woodblock print, and the One Hundred Aspects of the Moon, published between 1885 and 1892, were his crowning achievement. This series—illustrating scenes from history, legend, and contemporary life, unified by the motif of the moon—abounds with stylistic innovations, drawn from Western art and the artist's own fertile imagination. Even as traditional woodblock prints were being supplanted by mass media like lithography, an eager public snapped up Yoshitoshi's images—many of which were sold out on the morning of their publication.
This magnificent facsimile of One Hundred Aspects of the Moon reproduces each print at its original size, facing an explanation of the subject. A thorough introductory text, augmented with many comparative illustrations, traces Yoshitoshi's career and the genesis of this series. Printed and bound to the most exacting specifications, this volume will be a must for aficionados of Japanese prints.
An up-to-date edition of the authoritative history of photography—widely embraced by both students and general readers
Naomi Rosenblum's classic history of photography traces the evolution of this young art form chronologically and thematically. Exploring the diverse roles that photography has played in the communication of ideas, Rosenblum devotes special attention to topics such as portraiture, documentation, advertising, and photojournalism, and to the camera as a means of personal artistic expression. Her text is illustrated with nearly nine hundred images by photographers both celebrated and little known, arranged in stimulating juxtapositions that illuminate their visual power.
This fifth edition of A World History of Photography is substantively revised and updated. The photography of the past several decades is reevaluated from a contemporary perspective, and international developments are covered in greater detail. The main strands of today's complex universe of digital image-making are masterfully summarized and placed in their historical context, and the careers of representative contemporary photographers are studied in depth.
Thoughtfully written, carefully and abundantly illustrated, and provided with a full apparatus—including a chronology, glossary, and annotated bibliography—Rosenblum's volume remains the indispensable work on its subject.