Book Description

Amazon.com Review From its incorporation in 1913, one of the stated intentions of the Cleveland Museum was to form fine collections of Asian art (no such proposals related to Western art). Thanks to a series of generous donors and enlightened curators, notably Langdon Warner and Sherman Lee, Cleveland's Asian holdings are now among the finest in the West, yet they are among the least published. Consequently, this book of the museum's treasures is long overdue. More than 100 objects have been selected. They are divided into three categories: China and Central Asia, India and Southeast Asia, and Japan and Korea, with each region introduced by a short but useful art-historical summary. A full page is devoted to an illustration of each object, with commentary reflecting the latest scholarship in the field given on the facing page. Cleveland has been lucky in the timing of its collecting: many of the Japanese objects acquired by Sherman Lee after World War II would not be allowed to leave Japan today. And the joyful Krishna lifting Mt. Govardhana (Cambodian, 6th century), one of the sculptural masterpieces of the world, has no counterpart outside Phnom Penh and could never be replaced (its lower portion was put together from fragments that had lain hidden in a Belgian garden for 40 years). The accession numbers of the objects--from a 15th-century Korean Amita triad, acquired in 1918, to recently discovered Chinese textiles that are revolutionizing the field--indicate a continuous history of discriminating collecting that is still maintained today. --John Stevenson Read more From Library Journal This book showcases the finest works of Asian art in the permanent collections of the Cleveland Museum of Art, one of America's leading collectors of this category. Selected from 4,399 holdings in a variety of media, more than 100 pieces are highlighted in full-page color reproductions, all accompanied by one-page commentaries by current or former curators. The introductory essay recounts the vision and historic formation of the collections, established in 1913. Covering arts from not only traditionally well-represented countries such as China, Japan, India, and Korea but also from lesser-known ones like Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam, Nepal, Kashmir, and Tibet, this book encapsulates centuries of ritual, belief, legend, and cultural archetype, culminating in the self-definition of the Asian peoples. Intended for both general readers and scholars, this is recommended as an important addition to the Asian art collections of public and academic libraries.?Lucia S. Chen, NYPLCopyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc. Read more

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