A term for the influence of Japanese art on Western art following the opening of Japan as a trade partner by Commodore Perry in 1854. The influence of Japonisme extended into the early 20th century. It particularly changed graphic art and painting. E.g. Impressionist and postimpressionist artists studied the more dynamic composition and cropping of Japanese motifs in Japanese woodcut prints. The art nouveau posters of e.g. Toulouse-Lautrec could also be seen in this context.

After a period in which Japan had chosen to isolate itself, Japanese ports reopened to trade with the West in 1853. A wave of foreign imports subsequently flooded European shores. In particular, there had been a real craze woodcut prints by masters of the ukiyo-e school. For a long period the phenomenon did not have a name, but after parisians experienced a Japanese pavilion at the World’s Fair of 1867, the popularity culminated and the the term Japonisme was coined in 1872. See also Japonaiserie.

There is mention of Japanese influence on Art Nouveau to find here