Art: Charms of a Floating World

There have been only a few private art collections in this century that have managed to define a period, a style, a mood. One of them was put together by a wealthy New Yorker named Louis Vernon Ledoux; at its peak, before he died in 1948, it contained no more than 250 Japanese wood-block prints.

But Ledoux, a scholar who made fundamental contributions to the study of the print, was obsessed with absolute quality, if so chimerical an idea can be called "absolute." In the case of 18th century Japanese wood blocks, this...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!