Vallauris, France, 1844 – Golfe-Juan, France, 1917
View of Mount Fuji
42.3 x 30.7 x 2.1 cm
Purchase, F. Cleveland Morgan Fund, inv. 2019.94
Decorative Arts and Design
This piece resulted from the encounter of Clément Massier, a talented ceramicist, and Siegfried Bing, the celebrated aesthete and art dealer who promoted Japonisme and Art Nouveau. The latter specialized in the sale of exotic curios in the 1860s. His predilection for all things Japanese soon became evident and his brother, August, set up an export office in Yokohama. In 1874, Siegfried opened a new gallery in Paris, initially named “Fantaisies japonaises” and later “L’Art japonais.” Bing also published the magazine Le Japon artistique, which enjoyed great influence among collectors (including William Van Horne) and artists. Following his meeting Tiffany and then Van de Velde, in 1895 he rechristened his gallery “L’Art nouveau,” where he featured works in the vanguard of the decorative arts without, however, neglecting objects from the Far East. Wonderfully synthesizing an audacious Art Nouveau and scintillating Japonisme, the work here was inspired by the iconography of Mount Fuji disseminated in Europe through the ukiyo-e prints of the floating world by Hokusai and Hiroshige.