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Distributed for McMullen Museum of Art, Boston College


Collecting Japanese Art in Gilded Age America

Eaglemania celebrates Boston College’s mascot, a monumental Japanese bronze eagle, following its recent conservation and return to view. Donated in the 1950s by the estate of diplomat and collector Larz Anderson (1866–1937) and his wife, Isabel (1876–1948), the eagle recently received in-depth restoration that has revealed its fine detail, carefully modeled form, and excellent material construction.

Eaglemania brings the history of this stunning object to life. It features new research on topics that contextualize the Boston College eagle, assembling articles that discuss various aspects of its Edo- and Meiji-period origins. These include the Andersons’ acquisition of the eagle; the Boston College eagle seen in comparison with other exceptional Meiji eagle figures; the meanings of eagle depictions in the Edo and Meiji periods; and Japan’s rise as a destination for American collectors, particularly of sculpture, in the Meiji period. Through its focus on eagle imagery, this study illuminates cross-cultural dynamics resulting from American collectors’ fascination with traditional and contemporary Japanese arts and Japanese artists’ adaptation to this market. 

165 pages | 85 color plates, 40 halftones | 10 x 12 | © 2019

Art: American Art, Middle Eastern, African, and Asian Art

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