Bronze-Workers by Mortimer Menpes. 1901. Watercolor. Source: Japan: A Record in Colour, facing p. 158. Menpes noted that the cheap imitations turned out by Japan for the Western market had not prevented their craftsmen from doing "exquisite work in bronze, so delicate as to resemble the finest lace" (95). It was the same in other crafts. Menpes soon came up with the idea of gathering "the best operators in metal, wood, and bronze to work for me" (158), setting them to produce fittings for his house in London. Interestingly, he found that they in fact declined to do repetitive work, preferring to fashion small numbers of individual pieces. He would indeed decorate the interior of his house in Japanese style, with their unique handiwork.— Jacqueline Banerjee

You may use this image without prior permission for any scholarly or educational purpose as long as you (1) credit the University of California and the Internet Archive and (2) link your document to this URL in a web document or cite it in a print one. [Click on the image to enlarge it.]

Related Material


Menpes, Dorothy. Japan: A Record in Colour. London: Adam & Charles Black, 1901. Internet Archive version of a copy in the University of California Libraries. Web. 4 July 2019.

Created 5 July 2019