Rare Book School

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Rare Book School
Preliminary Reading List

I-95. Hokusai & Book Illustration

Ellis Tinios


Preliminary Advices

More has been written about Hokusai in Japanese and Western languages than any other Japanese artist. Scores of monographs and exhibition catalogues of varying quality are devoted to him. This preliminary reading list is intended to provide a context for the course.

  1. Roger Keyes. Ehon: the Artist and the Book in Japan. The New York Public Library & University of Washington Press, 2006.
    Offers a highly personal appreciation of the illustrated book in Japan based on a unique combination of scholarship and empathy. An excellent, accessible introduction to the subject.
  2. Ellis Tinios. Japanese Prints: Ukiyo-e in Edo, 1600-1900. British Museum Press & Lund Humphries, 2010.
    Provides an overview of the woodblock prints produced in the city of Edo (present-day Tokyo) with a detailed account of printing that applies to the production of books as well as prints.
  3. Jack Hillier. The Art of Hokusai in Book Illustration (1980).
    A ground-breaking study by a great scholar and connoisseur of Japanese book illustration.
  4. Hokusai: One Hundred Views of Mount Fuji. Introduction and Commentaries on the Plates by Henry Smith. George Braziller, Inc., 1988.
    Every opening of each of the three volumes that make up this—the most famous of Hokusai’s books—are reproduced in the exact size and order of the original.