A beautifully illustrated exploration of the impact of Chinese and Japanese material culture on the historic houses and gardens of Britain and Ireland.
The European passion for Chinese and Japanese art and ornament has had a profound impact in the British Isles since the seventeenth century, and nowhere is this more evident than in the houses and gardens of the National Trust. Chinese and Japanese influences on country-house décor and garden design began with luxury imports, carefully tailored to Western fantasies and expectations. Domestic designers and artisans soon added their own fanciful interpretations of 'oriental' art to the mix, traditionally known as chinoiserie and japonisme.
Illustrated with a wealth of new photography, and filled with extraordinary, hitherto little-researched objects and environments, this engaging survey of orientalism in historic houses and gardens across England, Wales and Northern Ireland demonstrates how elements of Chinese and Japanese culture were both desired and misunderstood, treasured and dismembered, idealised and caricatured.