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  • 執筆者の写真Michi

Selection from the Permanent Collection of Chiba Museum of Art VII


The exhibition selected from the permanent collection is now on view from Sept. 7 to Oct. 3.

It includes Japanese paintings and woodblock prints from the 17th to the early 20th centuries

by SUZUKI Harunobu, MORI Tetsuzan, KITAGAWA Utamaro, UTAGAWA Toyokuni, and UTAGAWA Hiroshige, and so on under the theme of "Elegance of Autumn", by AZECHI Umetaro, FUKAZAWA Sakuichi, FUJIMORI Shizuo, and so on under the theme of "Earthquake disaster and reconstruction".

Special Collection: FUKAZAWA Yukio's(深沢幸雄) (1924~2017) works of etching, drypoint, mezzotint, and so on

Here are some of them.

A big earthquake hit the Tokyo area at 11:58 on Sept.1 in 1923(大正12年), which is called "Kanto Daishinsai" Since it occurred when many people were cooking for lunch, a wide area of Tokyo was burnt down into ashes. Some artists were attracted by the reconstruction progresses and depicted the modern architecture such as bridges and buildings.

The title of the woodblock print above is 'Landscape with a Bridge' by AZECHI Umetaro (1902~1999), who is noted as a "woodblock print artist of mountains". He depicted this print around in 1929.

The title of the woodblock print above is 'The Earthquake Memorial Hall(震災記念堂、現東京都慰霊堂) from the series One Hundred Views of New Tokyo' by FUJIMORI Shizuo(1891~1943). The Earthquake Memorial Hall was constructed for the remains of the Kanto Daishinsai victims in 1930(Showa 5). He depicted this print in 1931(Showa 6).

The title of this woodblock print above is 'Night View at Yanagibashi, from the series One Hundred Views of New Tokyo' by FUKAZAWA Sakuichi(1895~1947). Yanagibashi was constructed in 1887 (Meiji 20). It was destroyed by the big fire and was rebuilt imitating the bridge over the Rhine river in Germany. He depicted this print in 1929(Showa 4).

The title of the woodblock print above is 'Beauty Enjoying the Clear Moon' by UTAGAWA Toyokuni(1769~1825). This was an Uchiwa-e to be pasted on one side of a fan. He depicted an elegant woman who was viewing the clear moon, leaning her head on her hand. On the other side of the fan he depicted the lower part of the woman and the clear moon, too, which wasn't on view in this exhibition. Toyokuni raised many disciples in his 40-year career as Ukiyo-e artist. When he passed away at the age of 58 in 1825, a monument of honor was built, with the names of 86 disciples on it.

This is the left-hand screen of the six-panel folding screens titled 'Birds and Flowers in Spring and Autumn'. MORI Tetsuzan (1775~1841) depicted a maple tree in the center with birds and flowers on the golden background. On the right-hand screen he depicted mountain cherry blossoms, which is not on view in this exhibition. He belonged to the 'Shijo school' and then became a disciple of MARUYAMA Okyo. He was good at drawing animals and got highly appreciated in Osaka.

The title of the woodblock print above is 'Red Leaves of Tsutenkyo(通天橋), from the series Famous Places in Kyoto' by UTAGAWA Hiroshige (1797~1858). He depicted the people enjoying sake on a bench near the clear stream. Look at the colored maple leaves floating on the stream which contributed to show the elegance of autumn. He began to draw famous places by visiting various regions and Edo, almost at the same time as he published 'Fifty-three Stages of the Tokaido'.

The title of the woodblock print above is 'Autumn Moon over Tsukuda-jima, from the series Fashionable Snow, Moon, Flowers' by KEISAI Eisen (1791~1848). He depicted a Geisha, a professional female entertainer, returning home after work in the Sumida river area. The moon depicted in a round small space as well as the shadows of silver grass in a vase added the feeling after the elegance of autumn to this print.

The title of the woodblock print above is 'Autumn Moon at Ishiyama, from the series Eight Perspective Views of Omi' by KITAGAWA Utamaro (? ~1806). He used the perspective method(遠近法)to draw the pine trees that lead your eyes to the temple gate. The clear moon shows us the elegant night in autumn. This is one of the few landscape prints drawn by Utamaro.

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