The Imperial Museums of Meiji Japan: Architecture and the Art of the Nation
It was not until Japan's opening to the West during the Meiji period (1868-1912) that terms for art (bijutsu) and art museum (bijutsukan) were coined. The Imperial Museums of Meiji Japan documents Japan's unification of national art and cultural resources to forge a modern identity influenced by European museum and exhibition culture.Japan's Imperial Museums were conceived of as national self-representations, and their creation epitomized the Meiji bureaucracy's mission to engage in the international standards and practices of the late nineteenth century. The architecture of the museums, by incorporating Western design elements and construction methods, effectively safeguarded and set off the nation's unique art historical lineage. Western paradigms and expertise, coupled with Japanese resolve and ingenuity, steered the course of the museums' development.
by : Alice Y. Tseng