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MFA for Educators

Engage your students with the collections of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, to illustrate themes and concepts in any discipline.

Rethinking Identity: Morimura Yasumasa

The conflicting roles of modernization, Westernization, and globalization in the evolution of Japanese society and culture is still an ongoing debate. This debate has captured the attention of a number of contemporary Japanese artists, including Morimura Yasumasa (b.1951). He came to global prominence in the late 1980s, through his manipulated photographs of iconic Western paintings and images.

 

The artist comments on Japan's history since the start of the Meiji era (1868 - 1912) -- the period of rapid industrialization, modernization, and Westernization. His body of work gives expression to a widely held perception that all attempts at "modernization" must inevitably result in a dangerous hyridity that can have disturbing consequences.

 

This Lesson shows a sampling of Morimura's work, in comparison with the original artworks he is interpolating.

 

 



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