Matchibako: Japanese Matchbox Art of the 20s and 30s


Matchibako: Japanese Matchbox Art of the 20s and 30s

Author Maggie Kinser Hohle
Publication Date 2007
ISBN 9780972563659
Hard Cover 
Publisher Mark Batty Publisher


The Machibako art skillfully captures Japan's rapid transition into an industrialized nation during the early to mid-20th century, as portrayed through the minuscule advertisements adorning matchboxes from that era. In a shifting leisure market, matches became a common sight alongside cigarettes in Western-style hotels, coffeehouses, and neighboring sushi bars. Customers, whether dressed in modern Western attire or traditional Japanese garments, saw their reflections in the new graphical representations. Created anonymously, these diminutive relics from that period exhibited the influence of cubism and the Bauhaus movement in their illustrations and English typography, while retaining traditional woodblock fonts and right-to-left Japanese text. This excellently crafted small book offers a delightful array of images portraying moments of pleasure from a distant corner of the world.

ISBN: 9780972563659

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