SOAS Research Online

A Free Database of the Latest Research by SOAS Academics and PhD Students

[skip to content]

Fukunaga, Ai (2018) 'Tourism and Collecting in Kyoto: The Miyako Hotel as an Agent in the Creation of the Hon. Henry Marsham Collection of Japanese Art, Maidstone Museum, Kent.' Journal for Art Market Studies, 2 (3).

[img] Text - Published Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 (CC BY-NC 4.0).

Download (19kB)


The Hon. Henry Marsham (1845-1908) was a British businessman who collected Japanese works of art in Kyoto during the 1900s. His Kyoto ware collection at Maidstone Museum, Kent, is superior in both quantity and quality to other collections in Japan and overseas. The over 700 ceramic works in this collection range from daily dishes and tea vessels to utensils exclusively made for noble families. Marsham assembled the objects in a transnational process which was instigated in Japan before it continued in Britain. He collected Japanese works with local support before sending his collection to the Kentish provincial museum, with which he communicated closely on matters of arrangement and display. This paper examines the role of the Miyako Hotel, as an actor in creating Marsham’s collection as well as his Kyoto network for collecting. The interactions between the British collector and the local agents are illustrated based on letters and manuscript notes in his archive at the Maidstone Museum. The actors from the empirical study are then discussed in the context of Kyoto and the emerging tourist industry in the late Meiji era, complemented by the research of local newspaper articles of the time. Understanding collecting as a collaborative process by actors in different sectors, the network of collecting is contextualised here for both the collector and the people in Meiji Kyoto.

Item Type: Journal Article
Keywords: Art market, Kyoto, Henry Marsham, Maidstone, Japanese art, Japanese ceramics, Hotel
SOAS Departments & Centres: Departments and Subunits > School of Arts > Department of the History of Art & Archaeology
Subjects: A General Works > AC Collections. Series. Collected works
A General Works > AM Museums (General). Collectors and collecting (General)
D History General and Old World > DA Great Britain
D History General and Old World > DS Asia
N Fine Arts > NK Decorative arts Applied arts Decoration and ornament
ISSN: 25117602
Copyright Statement: Copyright (c) 2018 Ai Fukunaga
DOI (Digital Object Identifier):
Date Deposited: 27 Sep 2018 12:39
Related URLs: https://www.fok ... article/view/66 (Publisher URL)
Funders: Other

Altmetric Data


Download activity - last 12 monthsShow export options
Downloads since deposit
6 month trend
6 month trend
Accesses by country - last 12 monthsShow export options
Accesses by referrer - last 12 monthsShow export options

Repository staff only

Edit Item Edit Item