Art And Culture, 1920-1945, An Exhibition Curated By Dr. Kendall Brown
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Between February 13 and July18, 2015 the Brigham Young University Museum of Art is exhibiting Deco Japan: Shaping Art and Culture, 1920-1945, an exhibition curated by Dr. Kendall Brown. The exhibit was collected in an attempt to detail the cultural transformation that took place in Japan from the Roaring Twenties all the way through the end of World War II. The exhibit displays the tension between the deep national culture and the up and coming cosmopolitan lifestyle. Dr. Brown gathered art of all variations, ranging from paintings to sculptures to ordinary household objects.
Deco Art itself is a reflection of changing world cultures. It was born in France post-World War I as a sort of marriage between craft motifs and the industrial age, characterized by wealthy and bold-looking colors and shapes. The art form is well depicted in the decoration of the Rockefeller Center in New York or any of the art and decor found in the movie The Great Gatsby. This striking form represented the glamour of the age. In a great sense, the period represented a change from conservative to a more liberal view on life. This was no different in Japan.
The period observed through the art pieces is one of extreme tension between two very different lifestyles. During this time, many Japanese youth were reaching out to Western Modernism and the allure of the big city and Jazz culture. The “Moga,” short for Modan Gaaru (modern girl) and the “Mobo,” the modern boy, were paving the way for a new