This chapter discusses the history of modern Japanese sculpture from Edo to Meiji up to the postwar period. From the opening of Japan in the Meiji period, beginning in 1868, there had been substantial changes in the art of sculpture in Japan that could be attributed to influences from the West. However, fresh trends had already been developing in the Edo period. This chapter begins by taking a look at Japan’s first sculptors and their works, such as bronze monuments. It then considers naturalism in Japanese sculpture, along with Auguste Rodin’s influence on Japanese sculptors like Ogiwara Morie. It also examines the establishment of academism and the development of wood sculpture as well as various phases in Japanese sculpture between the two world wars. Finally, it assesses Japanese sculpture from the Great Kantō Earthquake to World War II and the postwar era.
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