VSANA Library of Stone Appreciation Books

The following reviews are intended to give readers an indication of the wide range of books available, primarily on Asian stone appreciation, but also on Western stones. Additional reviews are added to this site each month. They are presented in the country where they are produced. Unfortunately, some of the books are out of print and difficult to obtain.

French Publications:



Delacour, Catherine. 2012.

Rochers de lettrẻs, itinẻraries de l’art en Chine.

Musẻe Guimet & Musẻe Nationaux Grand Palais, Paris. 164 pp. ISBN 979-10-90262-05-8. 39 Euros.

This is a catalog of an international exhibition that centers on the theme of Chinese scholar’ stones and their place among scholars, poets, artists, and civil servants held at the Musẻe Guimet from March 28 through June 25, 2012 in Paris, France. The title of the catalog translated, Scholars’ Rocks, Itineraries of Chinese Art, lets you know that this isn’t just a catalog of stones out of context from ancient Chinese society. The exhibition on which the catalog is based succeeds in showing the role of scholars’ stones in the lives of the poets, artists, calligraphers, and civil servants in the Song, Ming and Qing dynasties and with contemporary artists.

The first part of this book contains four essays--two by Delacour, one by Zeng Xiaojun, and one by the remarkable artist Liu Dun whose works are featured in the exhibition and catalog. The remainder of the volume is devoted to a description and commentary of the objects exhibited. It is generously illustrated with 130 color photographs of many of the objects. Readers fluent in French will benefit greatly from the extensive commentary that accompanies the illustrations. This paperback volume is an important contribution to understanding the role that scholars stones played in the lives of the literati in China during many of the dynasties.

Rating:  Excellent, especially for people with a reading knowledge of French.

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