The Hotei Encyclopedia of Japanese Woodblock Prints will serve as a source of quick reference as well as an in-depth study of all aspects of Japanese prints from the Edo (1600-1868) to Taisho (1912-26) periods.
The first section of The Hotei Encyclopedia is divided into four main subject areas: historical background, the art history of Ukiyo-e prints, print production (materials and techniques, the publishing trade) and the history of collecting Japanese prints, with a shorter fifth section on conservation. Each subject area contains a longer survey article which is accompanied by shorter essays that highlight specific topics pertaining to Japanese prints and their development.
The second section of the book comprises an extensive alphabetical listing of well over a 2000 carefully cross-referenced entries on individual print designers and schools, publishers, carvers, printers and collectors, major Kabuki actors, materials and techniques, conservation, subject-matter/iconography, literature and miscellaneous print-related terminology. This is followed by various appendices, including such aspects as seals of publishers and carvers, signatures, maps and chronological tables.
With this ambitious project Hotei Publishing hopes to fill the gap for an extensive reference work and introduction to Japanese prints, one that will prove a valuable resource for teachers and students, art collectors, librarians and interested lay-people alike.