Shandong exhibits Japanese Ukiyoe wood block paintings
An exhibition featuring Japanese Ukiyoe wood block paintings was unveiled on June 1 at the Shandong Museum in the provincial capital of Jinan to celebrate the 35th anniversary of the establishment of friendly relations between Shandong and Yamaguchi Prefecture of Japan.
The exhibition featuring Japanese Ukiyoe wood block paintings opens on June 1 at the Shandong Museum in Jinan. [Photo by Li Bo/sdmuseum.com]
Some 116 precious Japanese Ukiyoe woodblock prints dating back to the 19th century are on display. Ukiyoe, interpreted as "pictures of the floating world", mainly depicts beauty, Kabuki, local customs, landscapes and historical events.
Ukiyoe flourished from the 17th through the 19th centuries. The word originally comes from a Buddhist term indicating that the floating world is actually a sorrowful place with fluctuations beyond the control of human beings. It is also a term used to describe the Japanese urban lifestyle of that time which emphasized the enjoyment of simplicity.
The art catered to the need for popular enjoyment and mass aesthetics against the historical background of a relatively flourishing period when the society was stable and civic culture was emphasized.
Woman Applying Makeup, a masterpiece of Hashiguchi Goyo, is on exhibit at the Shandong Museum. [Photo by Li Bo/sdmuseum.com]
All of the exhibits are provided by Yamaguchi's Hagi Uragami Museum, offering a perfect opportunity for local residents to catch a glimpse of the representative works of the leading figures in the shin hanga (new print) movement, such as Hashiguchi Goyo (1880-1921), Kawase Hasui (1883-1957), Itō Shinsui (1898-1972) and Hiroshi Yoshida (1876-1950). Shin Hanga revitalized traditional Ukiyoe art when it began to decline with the advent of photography in the early 20th century.
The exhibition will last until July 9.