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Wednesday, October 05, 2011

France/Spain 2011 - Day 5, Part 10 - Paris: Musée Guimet - Japan

France/Spain 2011
Day 5 - 21st March - Paris: Musée Guimet - Japan
(Part 10)

I then moved on to to the smaller but still interesting Japanese collection.

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River festival at the sanctuary of Tsushima. Start of Edo period: second half of 17th c.
Interestingly Tsushima is an island in between Japan and Korea

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Genso (Emperor Xuanzong) and Yokihi (Yang Guifei). Kano School. 17th c.
Don't ask me why Xuanzong and Yang Guifei have Japanese names. Okay actually early Japanese culture is just pirated Chinese culture, so.

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"The 10 types of studies of the physiognomy of women": woman counting on her fingers. Kitagawa Utamaro. 1792-3.

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Yamauba and Kintaro. The cleaning of the ears. Kitagawa Utamaro. 1801-3.

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Yamauba and Kintaro. Suckling. Kitagawa Utamaro. 1801-3.
"Ken" pronounced this "ecchi".

There's actually a story behind this:

"Yama-uba (山姥, mountain crone) is a yōkai ("spirit" or "monster") found in Japanese folklore. The name may also be spelled Yamamba or Yamanba... Despite her predatory nature, Yama-uba has a benevolent side. For example, she raised the orphan hero Kintarō, who became the famous warrior Sakata no Kintoki, a relationship that forms the basis for the noh drama Yama-uba"

The museum supposedly had one print of 36 views of Mt Fuji, but I didn't see it on display.

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Edo Yoshiwara. Anonymous. First half of 18th c.

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Arrival of the Portuguese (Nanban byobu). Anonymous. Start of 17th c.

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Noh masks. On the left: emaciated man, demon. Then on the right: jealous woman spirit, vengeful phantom of jealous woman

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Portrayal of Man. Start of 17th c.
Despite the pose this is a layman, not a monk. It has been identified asToki Yorisada, military governor of Mino province around 1336.

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Bishamon-ten, Guardian King of the North (Vaisravana). Start of 13th c.

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Likeness Zen monk. 16th c.

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Seated Buddha. First half of 11th c.
This Buddha is making the "fear not" gesture, dated to the end of the 9th century. It marked the breakage of diplomatic links with China and the development of an independent Japanese aesthetic.

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Fugen-bosatsu (the Bodhisattva Samantabhadra). Start of 14th c.
Fugen-bosatsu incarnates practice or application.

The Chinese converted the Koreans who then converted the Japanese to Buddhism.

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Mount/setting (?) with crayfish decoration, 19th c. / Dagger (aikuchi), sheath with decor of monkey catching the moon. End of 18th c.

There was Japanese China. I don't think I'd seen it before, but it wasn't very nice. It wasn't so spectacularly bad as to warrant recording, though.

The Japanese are keen on stoneware. What looks like defects to Western eyes, e.g. cracks, is an "expression of the mysterious impenetrability of things". I wasn't particularly convinced.
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