Social Life and Shifting Meaning of Collected Objects: Japanese Ceramics of Sir William Cornelius Van Horne (1843–1915)

The newest addition to YCAR’s Asia Research Brief’s series is From Japan to Canadian Museum Storage: Shifting Meaning of Objects from the Japanese Ceramics Collection of William Cornelius Van Horne (1843– 1915) by Akiko Takesue.

You can access the ARB here:

Dr. Takesue, a YCAR alumnus who completed her PhD in Art History and Visual Culture at York University earlier this year, looks at how a group of Japanese ceramic objects collected by Sir William C. Van Horne in late nineteenth century Montreal have acquired meaning.

She examine the shifting meaning of these objects through their spatial and temporal
movements from Japan to Canada and from the late nineteenth century to the
present. From having a high reputation during the collector’s lifetime to their ambiguous status in the museum’s storage today, these objects embody interpretational gaps, as seen for example in the misidentification of a genuine tea bowl made by prominent potter Nonomura Ninsei (active ca.1646–1677) in the collection.

Dr. Takesue is co-curating an upcoming exhibition on Van Horne’s collection.

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Asia Research Briefs (ARBs) provide short summaries of research by YCAR Associates. Their purpose is to share insights from academic research that are otherwise not widely circulated. They are directed, in particular, to journalists, policy analysts, community leaders and interested members of the public.

CLICK HERE to see a list of YCAR’s ARBs.