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Japanese Illustrated Books!!!

Introducing the Arthur Tress Collection of Japanese Illustrated Books with Julie Nelson Davis

At the Rare Book School!

A 40-minute Zoom presentation followed by 30-minutes of Q&A scheduled for: Wednesday, 22 July, 4–5:10 p.m. ET, via Zoom. Please visit the webpage to learn more about the session and register today. 

In June 2018, photographer Arthur Tress gave his collection of more than 1,400 Japanese illustrated books to the University of Pennsylvania Libraries. In this talk, Davis will begin by describing how that gift came to Penn, will draw its contours, and will highlight some of its masterworks. The collection is one of the largest at any university and includes work ranging from the late seventeenth century through the 1940s. It also includes representative examples of woodblock printing throughout the period, from popular comic novels to kabuki programs, from books on painting to travel guides, erotica, and pattern books, and many, many more. Reflecting on what it means for this to be a “study collection,” Davis discusses how these materials are being employed in focused, object-based teaching, from Rare Book School courses to university instruction. In addition, she will discuss how these books are being employed in hands-on classes, as well as in developing an exhibition with students, with both online and print components—and how that project was adapted due to the current pandemic.

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