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Korean acrobatic rider writing the character "tiger"
奥村政信 朝鮮人曲馬の図
Date: approx. 1748
Object Name: Woodblock print (beni-e)
Materials: Ink with hand-applied color on paper
Dimensions: H. 28 1/4 in x W. 6 5/8 in, H. 71.8 cm x W. 16.8 cm (hashira-e)
Credit Line: Gift of the Grabhorn Ukiyo-e Collection
Department: Japanese Art
Collection: Prints And Drawings
Object Number: 2005.100.10
On Display: No

Description

Label:

Each of the dozen Korean embassy delegations that visited Japan during the Edo period brought excitement to the capital. Some five hundred musicians, archers, riders, and other entertainers led sensational processions that drew the attention and admiration of Japanese writers and painters. This example by Okumura Masanobu, dated to the time of the 1748 embassy, shows an exotically costumed rider displaying his skill by brushing the character for tiger (tora) while standing in the stirrups of a black and white horse.

Masanobu was an innovator, said to have been the first to employ the narrow hashira-e (pillar-print) format. By cutting off the figure at both sides, he creates the effect of a rider galloping past the viewer. Among his other prints of Korean embassy processions is an uki-e (perspective picture) showing the Korean embassy’s progress through the streets of Edo (Tokyo National Museum collection, A-10569_434), based on a painting by Hanegawa Tōei (active 1735–1750). Another example is a 1711 series of twelve prints of a Korean procession, ten of which are in the British Museum collection (1926,04190.40.1–10), which includes a horseman wearing headgear similar to the black horsehair hat with feathers seen on the rider in this print.


More Information

Signature/Seal: Signature: 芳月堂正名 奥村文角政信正筆 Hōgetsudō shōmei Okumura Bunkaku Masanobu shōhitsu

Artist’s seal: 丹鳥齋 Tanchōsai
Exhibition History: On rotation in "Designed for Pleasure: The World of Edo Japan in Prints and Paintings, 1680-1860", Asia Society, 2/25/2008 - 5/4/2008

“The Printer’s Eye: Ukiyo-e from the Grabhorn Collection”, Asian Art Museum, 2/20/15-5/10/15
Label:

Each of the dozen Korean embassy delegations that visited Japan during the Edo period brought excitement to the capital. Some five hundred musicians, archers, riders, and other entertainers led sensational processions that drew the attention and admiration of Japanese writers and painters. This example by Okumura Masanobu, dated to the time of the 1748 embassy, shows an exotically costumed rider displaying his skill by brushing the character for tiger (tora) while standing in the stirrups of a black and white horse.

Masanobu was an innovator, said to have been the first to employ the narrow hashira-e (pillar-print) format. By cutting off the figure at both sides, he creates the effect of a rider galloping past the viewer. Among his other prints of Korean embassy processions is an uki-e (perspective picture) showing the Korean embassy’s progress through the streets of Edo (Tokyo National Museum collection, A-10569_434), based on a painting by Hanegawa Tōei (active 1735–1750). Another example is a 1711 series of twelve prints of a Korean procession, ten of which are in the British Museum collection (1926,04190.40.1–10), which includes a horseman wearing headgear similar to the black horsehair hat with feathers seen on the rider in this print.


Signature/Seal: Signature: 芳月堂正名 奥村文角政信正筆 Hōgetsudō shōmei Okumura Bunkaku Masanobu shōhitsu

Artist’s seal: 丹鳥齋 Tanchōsai
Exhibition History: On rotation in "Designed for Pleasure: The World of Edo Japan in Prints and Paintings, 1680-1860", Asia Society, 2/25/2008 - 5/4/2008

“The Printer’s Eye: Ukiyo-e from the Grabhorn Collection”, Asian Art Museum, 2/20/15-5/10/15