Chiyoda Inner Palace - First published from 1894 - 1897, Chikanobu's "Chiyoda Inner Palace" (Chiyoda no Ooku) series depicts the lives of women in Edo Castle prior to the Meiji Restoration, when it was home to the shogun and his court. Edo Castle was also known as Chiyoda Castle, and the series includes 40 triptychs. The Inner Palace area housed the shogun's wife and unmarried daughters, his male heir, and many ladies-in-waiting and servants. These lovely triptychs illustrate seasonal activities both inside and outside of the women's private quarters, and a variety of ceremonies, rituals, and pastimes. The beauties are elegantly attired as they go about their daily lives, with wonderful attention and detail given to their sumptuous kimono and obi fabrics. Many designs include deluxe printing techniques such as burnishing, embossing, and mica or metallic pigment. Chikanobu's lovely "Chiyoda Inner Palace" series beautifully captures the world of upper-class women in mid-nineteenth century Japan.
Poetry Contest, 1895 - Lovely triptych of the palace beauties preparing for a poetry contest. The women are seated in front of low lacquer tables with poem slips, ink stones, and brushes. Wonderful detail in the elegant lacquer furnishings, and beautiful vivid color in the sumptuous kimono fabrics. Beautifully detailed with fine embossing in the elderly woman's white kimono and hair, and burnishing on the hair, black robe, and black lacquer trays. A great scene from courtly life.
Artist - Chikanobu (1838 - 1912)
Image Size - 13 5/8" x 28 1/8" + margins as shown
Condition - This print with excellent detail as shown. Three attached panels, backed with paper. Vertical folds between panels. Slight toning and ink offsetting, a few ripples and creases, light lines where backing papers meet, a few fibers in paper. Please see photos for details.
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