Original Perspective Picture of the Great Gate and Naka-no-chô in the Shin Yoshiwara (Shin Yoshiwara Ômonguchi Naka-no-chô uki-e kongen); Shin Yoshiwara Omon-guchi Nakano-cho ukie kongen - ROM2015_14586_6

ROM2015_14586_6

Original Perspective Picture of the Great Gate and Naka-no-chô in the Shin Yoshiwara (Shin Yoshiwara Ômonguchi Naka-no-chô uki-e kongen); Shin Yoshiwara Omon-guchi Nakano-cho ukie kongen

Medium:Woodblock print on paper
Geography: Japan
Date: 1730
Period: Edo period
Dimensions:
Large yokoe, 32.2 x 45.9 cm
Object number: 926.18.56
Credit Line: Sir Edmund Walker Collection
Not on view
DescriptionThe print starts, as would a customer’s journey, in the upper-right corner, showing the Japan Embankment (Nihon-zutsumi), by which all travelled to Yoshiwara. We then reach the Great Gate, marked by the black flag, “Ōmon-guchi,” or “Great Gate Entrance.” Coming through it is a samurai in a basket hat, followed by a retainer with a sword. A Yoshiwara proprietor is bowing to him, while a kamuro with forelocks (maegami) and a long-sleeved (furisode) robe leads him forward. Another samurai and kamuro seem to be discussing something as they huddle together between the water tank and fire buckets beside the gate and a fishmonger selling shellfish. The man buying the fish stands at the entrance to a teahouse that opens up in a vanishing-point perspective before us. The name of the teahouse, Tomoe-ya, appears in kanji and kana on the black bunting across the top, and a large painting of Hotei (Ch. Budai) can be seen hanging in the innermost banquet room on the left. The focal point of the image at the center of the print is the procession of a high-ranking prostitute, wearing an over-robe of ivy and her obi tied in front, followed by her two kamuro, and her handler (yarite, notice the lack of eyebrows on the last). Various men surround her, while behind her another samurai sits in conversation with yet another prostitute, on the veranda of the Tomoe-ya. To the left of them is another prostitute watching the procession with her arm around the shoulders of her kamuro—this couple is also the subject of a kakemono-e print, or “hanging scroll picture,” owned by the Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam.
Collection:
Japan
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