Publisher Tokyo/New York/San Francisco Kodansha International Ltd. 1982
Seller ID 1927
Oatmeal-colored cloth with reddish-brown spine titles, dust jacket, washi endpapers, 22.5 by 31.3 cm, 360 pp. Hardcover is near fine with a name in pen on the second leaf; the jacket is very good with light fading on the spine and a few light scuff marks. A detailed and beautifully-illustrated history of Japanese washi paper. “The West is familiar with a few of the many elegant and colorful decorated papers of Japan, but though artists since Rembrandt have prized washi, the Western world has largely regarded paper as something cheap and disposable. In contrast, ever aware of the traditional skills, labor, and patience that have gone into its making, the Japanese have long cherished even the simplest handmade sheet. The beauty of washi's surface, its many types and uses, and the numerous objects enhanced by its qualities have been created by the Japanese practical and aesthetic sense, and, reciprocally, washi's own beauty helped mold the sensitivity of the people who made and used it. Washi occupies a place where man's inner world and external statements meet. Paper was a material of the craftsman and architect, the tea master, the painter and calligrapher; paper screens and shoji were part of every house; farmers and townsman alike used paper umbrellas, fans, lamps and lanterns, boxes and containers, toys, and even paper clothing; paper symbolized the purifying aspect of the god in Shinto rights. The world of Japanese paper touched every aspect of daily life.” Dust jacket present. First Edition.