Okakura Kakuzo

Okakura Kakuzo (1863-1913), Akakura) was a Japanese art critic and scholar who had a great influence on our understanding of Japanese culture.

Together wih Ernest Fenollosa, an American professor at Tokyo Imperial University, he was instrumental in defending Japan's traditional art forms which, during the Mejii period, were put in peril by modernization and the new political structure which severed Buddhist temples from state protection.

After setting up a fine arts school based on tradition, and traveling throughout Japan to study its art, he frequently traveled to Asia and the United States. At the turn of the century he became curator of the Oriental Art department of the Boston Museum of Fine Arts.

Several of his books were written directly in English: among them The Ideals of the East (1903), The Awakening of Japan (1904), and The Book of Tea (1906).

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