Skip to content

Collection

An image of Pictures of graceful figures of the east by Utagawa KUNISADA /TOYOKUNI III

Utagawa KUNISADA /TOYOKUNI III

(Japan 1786 – 1865)

Title
Pictures of graceful figures of the east
Other titles:
(Maple viewing party)
Alternative title:
Yasasugata Azuma no utsushi-e
Place of origin
Japan
Period
Edo (Tokugawa) period 1615 - 1868 → Japan
Year
circa 1852
Media category
Print
Materials used
colour woodcut; triptych
Dimensions

35.5 x 76.0 cm image ; 49.0 x 89.3 x 1.2 cm frame:

a - left sheet; 35.5 x 25 cm

b - centre sheet; 35.5 x 25.7 cm

c - right sheet; 35.5 x 25.7 cm

Signature & date
Signed [left sheet] c.l.[in cartouche], in Japanese, ink [incised on block], "Toyokuni ga [picture by Toyokuni]". Not dated. Signed [centre sheet], c.r.[in cartouche], in Japanese, ink [incised on block], "Toyokuni ga [picture by Toyokuni]". Not dated. Signed [right sheet], l.r., in Japanese, red ink [incised on block] "Ichiyôsai Toyokuni ga [picture by Ichiyôsai Toyokuni] [and artist's seal]". Not dated.
Credit
Gift of Margaret Olley 2000
Accession number
145.2000.a-c
Location
Not on display
Further information

'Momijigari', literally ‘hunting maple leaves’, is a seasonal amusement that dates back to the days of the Heian court, and was a popular subject in Japanese visual culture from classical times. In depicting his Genji-like figure wearing his topknot in an 'ebi chasen', accompanied by young women and being served by a beauty while enjoying the wondrous colour of autumn leaves, Kunisada references the chapter 'Momiji no ga' (Ch 7) of the 'Tale', in which Genji celebrates the former emperor’s birthday under the branches of autumn maple trees.

Asian Art Department, AGNSW.

Bibliography (1)

Gary Hickey, Genji - the world of the Shining Prince, 'Genji in the 'Floating World', pgs. 30-41., Sydney, 2008, 37 (colour illus.). fig.18.

Exhibition history (1)

Genji - the world of the Shining Prince, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 12 Dec 2008–15 Feb 2009