Miscellaneous Fan Prints of Women

Part I

 

An uchiwa is a non-folding fan consisting of paper attached to a bamboo frame.  These prints, which were intended to be glued onto uchiwa, are called uchiwa-e.  Six series of uchiwa-e of women are listed as numbers 41, 50, 99, 212, 213, and 219 in Kuniyoshi by Basil William Robinson (Victoria and Albert Museum, London, 1961).

Series: A Series of Cherries (Sakurazoroi, 桜揃)

Robinson: Not listed

Title: A Beautiful Cherry (小町桜)

Description:

Date: 1st month of 1855

Publisher: Enshu-ya Matabei

 

I am grateful to Ward Pieters for locating this image.

Series: A Series of Cherries (Sakurazoroi, 桜揃)

Robinson: Not listed

Title: Morning Cherry

Description: Beauty with cherry blossoms

Date: 1st month of 1855

Publisher: Enshu-ya Matabei

Series: The Three Rivers Illustrated (Sansen zue, 三川圖會)

Robinson: 99

Title: Tatekawa (竪川)

Date: 1855

Publisher: Iba-ya Sensaburô

Series: The Three Rivers Illustrated (Sansen zue, 三川圖會)

Robinson: 99

Title:

Date: 1855

Publisher: Iba-ya Sensaburô

Series: Snow, Moon and Flowers (Setsugekkwa no uchi, 雪月花の内)

Robinson: 213

Title: Moon ()

Description:

Date: 1847-1850

Publisher: Masugindo

 

Image courtesy of Richard Illing

Series: Beauties, Moon, Flower and Snow (Bijin gekkasetsu)

Robinson: Not listed

Title: Snow

Description:

Date: 1853

Publisher: Hanmoto ta (板元 )

Series: Five Modern Women (Imayô gonin no onna)

Robinson: not listed

Title:

Description: A courtesan

Date: 1850-1852

Publisher: Hanmoto ta (板元 )

Series: Eight Views of the Eastern Capital (Tôto hakkei, 東都八景)

Robinson: not listed

Title: Evening Glow at Nihonbashi Bridge (Nihonbashi no sekisho, 日本橋の夕照)

Description:

Date: 1842-1846 (censor Watanabe Shôemon)

Publisher: Enshû-ya Matabei

Series: Eight Views of the Eastern Capital (Tôto hakkei, 東都八景)

Robinson: not listed

Title: Sundown (Asakusa no seiran)

Description: Probably a seller from a shop at the Kinryuzan, which is partly seen

Date: 1842-1846 (censor Watanabe Shôemon)

Publisher:

Series: The Seven Komachi

Robinson: not listed

Title: Amagoi Komachi (雨乞小町), literally rain-prayer Komachi 

Comment: Komachi ends a drought by offering the following poem as a prayer for rain, “It is only reasonable since this is the Land of the Rising Sun for the sun to shine.  Nevertheless it is also called ama-ga-shita.”  (both [heaven] and [rain] reads ame/ama). Usually depicted is the petitioning Komachi by the shore of a pond in heavy rain–often with a servant holding an umbrella.

Date: 1847-1848

Publisher: Enshû-ya Matabei

 

Image courtesy of Richard Illing

Series: The Seven Komachi

Robinson: not listed

Title: Soushi-arai Komachi 草紙洗小町, literally Komachi washing a book

Comment: The night before a poetry contest at the Imperial Palace, Ootomo no Kuronushi overhears his rival, Ono no Komachi, recite her entry aloud to herself.  Hoping to disqualify her, he writes it into a copy of the Man’youshuu, and on the day of the competition accuses her of plagiarism.  However, Komachi washes (arai) the book (soushi), whereupon the fresh ink washed away and exposes Kuronushi’s scheme.  The poem reads, “No one has sown it–from what seed issues the floating grass which in the watery furrow of the waves sprouts and grows thick?”

Date: 1847-1848

Publisher: Enshû-ya Matabei

 

Image courtesy of Richard Illing

Series: The Seven Komachi

Robinson: Not listed

Title: Oumu Komachi 鴎鵡小町, literally parrot Komachi

Comment: The emperor sends a poem of pity to the aged Komachi: “Although above the clouds things do not change from how they were in the past, do you look back fondly on your time spent within the jeweled curtains”.  By changing only one word of the emperor’s poem, Komachi demonstrates that age has not dulled her wit, “Although above the clouds things do not change from how they were in the past, I do indeed look back fondly on my time spent within the jeweled curtains.”  Illustrations frequently include a parrot–often painted on a screen–because to repeat another’s words mechanically is called “parrot’s repetition”.

Date: 1847-1848

Publisher: Enshû-ya Matabei

Series:

Robinson: not listed

Title:

Description: Agriculture, transplanting rice seedlings

Date:

Publisher: Suruga-ya Sukujirô

Title: None

Description: Mother and child

Date: 1843-1847

Publisher: Ise-ya Sôemon

Title: Fûzoku ningyô... ?

Description: Women reenacting a scene from a kabuki play about Ohatsu and Iwafuji

Date: 4th month of 1856

Publisher: Ise-ya Sôemon

Series: Five Festivals (Go sekku no uchi, 五節供の内)

Robinson: Not listed

Title: Hozuki (21st day of the second month)

Date: 1842-1846 (censor Fukatsu Ihei)

Publisher: Hon-ya Genpachi

Series: Five Festivals (Go sekku no uchi, 五節供の内)

Robinson: Not listed

Title: Early Autumn (Môshû, 孟秋)

Date: 1842-1846 (censor Fukatsu Ihei)

Publisher: Hon-ya Genpachi

Series: Five Festivals (Go sekku no uchi, 五節供の内)

Robinson: Not listed

Title: 季白

Date: 1842-1846 (censor Fukatsu Ihei)

Publisher: Hon-ya Genpachi

Series: Three Hardships of Modern Women (當世三婦苦 Tôsei sanpukutsui)

Robinson: Not listed

Description: After the bath

Date: 1833

Publisher: Iba-ya Senzaburô

Series: Three Hardships of Modern Women (當世三婦苦 Tôsei sanpukutsui)

Robinson: Not listed

Description: A courtesan

Date: 1833

Publisher: Iba-ya Senzaburô

Series: None

Title: None

Description: Courtesan leaning on a balustrade

Date: c. 1842

Publisher:

Title: None

Description: Two geisha in identical costumes on a terrace dancing with folding fan

Date: 4th month of 1854

Publisher: Iba-ya Senzaburô

Series: Summer Scenes: The Hours of Day and Night (夏けしき昼夜どけい, Natsu kechiki chûya dokei)

Robinson: Not listed

Title: About 4 pm (ひる七ツ時, Hiru nanatsudoki)

Description: One woman sitting on a bench and another watering plants in a garden

Date: 1843-1846 (censor Muramatsu Genroku)

Publisher: Enshû-ya Matabei

Series: Summer Scenes: The Hours of Day and Night (夏けしき昼夜どけい, Natsu kechiki chûya dokei)

Robinson: Not listed

Title: About 10 pm (夜四ツ , Yoru yotsudoki)

Description: Woman on a balcony looking at a full moon

Date: 1843-1846

Publisher: Enshû-ya Matabei

“Robinson” refers to listing of the series in Kuniyoshi by Basil William Robinson (Victoria and Albert Museum, London, 1961). 

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