From ceramics to armour, intricate textiles to delicate mother of pearl boxes, the V&A's East Asian collection covers several thousand years of Chinese, Japanese and Korean art and design.
The V&A's collection of Japanese art and design is one of the largest in Britain. It includes ceramics, lacquer, arms and armour, woodwork, metalwork, textiles and dress, prints, paintings and sculpture. An active programme of acquiring modern and contemporary studio crafts has resulted in the V&A having one of the most prestigious holdings of this material outside Japan.
The V&A's Korean collection includes green-glazed ceramics, silk embroideries from officials' robes, boxes inlaid with mother-of-pearl and Park Young Sook’s monumental vessel ‘Moon Jar’. Made from 500 AD up to the present day, the diverse objects all reflect the love of natural forms that pervades the decorative arts of Korea.
Traditional Dress from East Asia
Traditional clothing from the East Asian countries of Japan, China and Korea tends to conceal the form of the body. With some exceptions, it is the surface decoration of dress from Japan and China, and the striking plain colour combinations of Korean clothes that hold our attention.