French-based term for "things Chinese." It usually refers to the periodic fads for "Oriental" stuff. Chinoiserie has historically most influenced Europe and American imitators of Europe. Blue Willow china is an example, as are the silk smoking jackets of British gents. Japonoiserie often accompanies Chinoiserie. Things that are Chinoiserie are generally not authentic but may be passed off as actually Chinese. The passion for Chinoiserie at the turn of the 19th century, though, helped expose artists and designers to the real thing, heavily influencing the Art Deco, Art Nouveau, and Impressionist movements, among others.

Chi`noi`se*rie" (she`nw&adot;`z'*re"), n. [F.]

Chinese conduct, art, decoration, or the like; also, a specimen of Chinese manners, art, decoration, etc.


© Webster 1913.

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