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Showing 21 reviews submitted by Gabriel Lebec:



Total items in list: 21
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Reviewed by Gabriel Lebec
(This review will largely repeat my review for Kodogu, with some slight modifications.)

This is a real treat of a book. Gunther Heckmann is a well-regarded figure in urushi, Japanese lacquerware, having studied under a Japanese master of the art. His artistic sensibilities translate into this elaborate volume on tsuba (Japanese sword guards)—it ...
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—Updated Feb 1, 2010



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Reviewed by Gabriel Lebec
This is a real treat of a book. Gunther Heckmann is a well-regarded figure in urushi, Japanese lacquerware, having studied under a Japanese master of the art. His artistic sensibilities translate into this elaborate volume on kodogu (metal fittings of the Japanese sword)—it is very large, minimalist in design, with a slipcover. The items are displayed ...
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—Updated Feb 1, 2010



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Reviewed by Gabriel Lebec
Hawley's is a standard reference. This edition is a 1000-page two-volume compendium of over 30,000 individual smiths' names, organized by first character, province, and date, with information on signatures and occasional tidbits on work style. Cross-references to other works (such as Fujishiro) show up every now and then as well.

This is a ...
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—Updated Dec 21, 2007



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Reviewed by Gabriel Lebec
In some ways, this book marks the distinction between the typical English-language introduction to Japanese swords, and a reference work to begin a true "study" of nihonto. The former should be read first (this book does not replace them–I'd recommend Kapp and Yoshindo's The Craft of the Japanese Sword and Sato's The Japanese Sword as two particularly good ...
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—Updated Nov 5, 2007



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Reviewed by Gabriel Lebec
An approachable and engaging overview of the arms and armour of Japan, this volume is conveniently separated by subject and contains some nice photos and basic introductory info. It's an enjoyable piece for those who are interested in but have little prior knowledge of the subject–and has some decent photos of good koshirae and blades for anyone who enjoys ...
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—Updated Nov 5, 2007



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Reviewed by Gabriel Lebec
The Met Museum bulletins are essentially teasers for current and upcoming exhibitions. They are well-written and feature beautiful color photos, and are an excellent value (I bought this edition for $12.95 directly from the gift shop). However, they are not intended to be a reference work or even a general overview of any specific topic - rather, they ...
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—Updated Nov 5, 2007



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Reviewed by Gabriel Lebec
It is easy for non-enthusiasts to underestimate the role of the polisher of Japanese swords. The polisher does more than clean the blade; Japanese togishi are sword scholars, museum-spec conservators, artisans who originally define the blade's final shape, and repair experts who restore bent, chipped, or rusty blades. It is because of this practice and ...
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—Updated May 22, 2006



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Reviewed by Gabriel Lebec
A catalog of swords from an exhibition at the British Museum, this book contains some brief intruductory material, but mostly just photos and captions of 100 specific items (counting blades and their mounts together). It is really only supplementary material for those who already own a decent library on the subject, fulfilling a similar role as auction ...
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—Updated May 4, 2006



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Reviewed by Gabriel Lebec
Far from a reference, this book is essentially a large-format gallery of the holdings in the Boston Museum of Fine Arts. Those holdings are, however, fairly good, with a number of particularly excellent later-period pieces, and the accompanying info is pertinent, varied, interesting, and well-schooled. This title gives a light overview of the subject with ...
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—Updated Jan 27, 2006



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Reviewed by Gabriel Lebec
The prominent English-language introductions to nihonto all have their own character. Gregory Irvine's entry in this field can be seen as the one most concerned with providing a continuous historical overview of the sword. In this respect, it succeeds in breaking down the sword's history by era/period, providing a wealth of anecdotes, dates, notable ...
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—Updated Jan 27, 2006



Total items in list: 21
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