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Kingyo: The Artistry of Japanese Goldfish
DISCOVER THE CULT OF THE GOLDFISH THROUGH JAPANESE ART, DESIGN AND LITERATURE
Goldfish were originally brought to Japan from China in 1502, to be raised exclusively by aristocrats as highly prized pets. In the 1800s, however, they became popular among the general public, and ultimately a unique culture of breeders, collectors, and connoisseurs came into being. Packed with photographs, Kingyo: The Artistry of Japanese Goldfish offers a delightful visual tour of goldfish in Japanese art and design, together with a description of the goldfish breeds that have developed in Japan over hundreds of years of meticulous cultivation.
Included in the volume is a novella written in the 1930s titled A Riot of Goldfish which tells of the impossible love of a breeder's son for the daughter of a wealthy patron. As his love grows into an obsession, he attempts to create a goldfish that will capture and reflect her beauty. The story charmingly evokes life in Japan in the early twentieth century and sheds light on the aesthetics of goldfish appreciation.
The stunning visual materials presented here reveal the vast iconography of goldfish in the graphic and decorative arts of Japan, extending to textiles, ceramics, paintings, lacquer ware, toys, and even household items. This book will be an inspiration for designers, collectors, and anyone interested in Japanese art.
A visual riot of goldfish
By Zack Davisson
- December 14, 2004
When it comes to artistic and exotic Japanese fish, for most people Koi is the first thing to spring to mind, if anything. A Japanese garden would not seem complete without a few of those large, gold beauties swimming elegantly under a moon-curved bridge. Some might be reminded of the Betta, often called a Japanese Fighting Fish (Or a Chinese Fighting Fish, or a Siamese Fighting Fish, or any-other-Asian-country Fighting Fish...) Rarely would one think of a goldfish.
Goldfish (Kingyo, in Japanese) are as much of an element of Japanese art as koi, cranes, cherry blossoms and white-faced courtesans. Like these, they are appreciated both for their natural beauty as well as their representational picturation. "Kingyo: The Artistry of Japanese Goldfish" explores both of these sides, showcasing the many wonders of the long tradition of goldfish breeding as well as the influence of goldfish design in all aspects of Japanese art, be they ceramics, Ukiyo-e prints, kimonos,... read more
Beautiful photos and art
- March 8, 2007
As a huge fan of fancy goldfish, I was pleased with this book. The cover and interior are lovely, with hundreds of photographs and art samples.
However, the book would be MUCH better if it was larger. As it is, the photographs are often stuck in the spine of the book, difficult to see.
End of the story...
- December 9, 2011
I absolutely love this book. I originally found this book at a library, borrowed it, renewed it at least 4 times, and I bought it so I CAN KEEP IT FOREVER.
Amazing book, it's like Playboy magazine or food network magazine for me.. makes my eyes delighted (:
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