Japanese culture in Scotland, 1880 - 1914

Japanese Culture In Scotland, 1880 - 1914

This video is designed to engage non-academic art lovers and those interested in Scottish and/or Japanese cultures with The Hunterian’s diverse collection of Japanese inspired Scottish art.

The five minute online discussion presents images of the Japanese-inspired paintings in The Hunterian and tours the drawing room of The Mackintosh House. The artists whose works are considered include:

• The Glasgow Boys (George Henry and E. A. Hornel)

• Charles Rennie Mackintosh

• Margaret MacDonald

• David Gauld

• Utagawa Hiroshige

By outlining the fusion of Scottish and Japanese cultures at the end of the nineteenth century, the video offers new understandings of, and trigger enthusiasm for, these artworks and designs. I demonstrate that Celtic cultures and Japanese cultures were perceived as very similar between 1880 and 1914 and that Scottish artists drew from Japanese culture as it could complement and further the Celtic Revival in Scotland. Curiously, the internationalism of Scottish artwork could lend to the formation of its national cultural identity.  I selected the online video format in order to reach a larger audience and increase the potential for public engagement, while still offering the necessary visual presentation. The video will be circulated around various societies, groups and institutions, which may be interested in Scottish or Japanese culture and art.

Michael Shaw, PhD student, English Literature

PhD Research
Researching The Roles of Aestheticism, Decadence and Symbolism in the Construction of Scottish Cultural Nationalism, c.1880-1914.

Michael shaw presentation

Presentation at the Hunterian Associates Open evening,Hunterian Art Gallery, October 2012