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Title

Spring amusements for noble daughters


Artist

Toyohara (Yôshû) CHIKANOBU

Japan

1838 - 1912


About

This work is from a fairly well-preserved concertina album which contains eight triptychs by two prominent print artists of the Meiji period, Adachi/Shōsai Ginkō and Toyohara/Yōshū Chikanobu. Except for the first triptych by Ginkō which depicts the Heian period court-lady Murasaki Shikibu, the author of the ‘Tale of Genji’, attending Empress Shōshi, all the other triptychs focus on wealthy, sophisticated contemporary women performing social activities like entertaining guests, gathering for tea ceremony, attending sewing classes or preparing decorations for the five major seasonal festivals.

In line with the increasing concern of Japanese government officials to teach moral values to the new generation in the early 1890s, a number of books were published concerning proper behaviour for women. Serving as manuals, many of those were entitled “Ladies’ Etiquette” ('Onna Reishiki') and described how women, especially those of the upper-class, should dress and act in various social events, giving them detailed instructions on the proper way to sit, bow, serve tea, welcome guests, how to spend their past time etc. Great attention has been paid to the rich colour and pattern of the kimono, suggesting that these prints might have functioned as fashion plates for wealthy ladies. Especially Ginkō’s prints were deluxe editions, made upon commission and used luxurious techniques such as blind printing.

Asian Art Department, AGNSW, December 2008.


Details


Place where the work was made

Japan


Date

1891


Media categories

Print , Book


Materials used

concertina album; triptych; colour woodblock print


Dimensions

35.4 x 23.7 cm


Credit

Gift of Shona Barker 2008


Location

Not on display


Accession number

408.2008.8.a-c


Artist information

Toyohara (Yôshû) CHIKANOBU

Works in the collection

9


Place

Where the work was made
Japan