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.
Excursion to the Hills, 1895 - Lovely triptych of a high ranking court lady accompanied by two attendants, returning to her palanquin after viewing the cherry blossoms during an excursion to the hills. She wears an elegant kimono patterned with delicate wisteria blossoms and vines, some of the petals detailed with mica that has oxidized to gray. At right, a beauty kneels beside the elaborate palanquin, which features black lacquer and gold fittings. At left, younger woman carries a parcel wrapped in fine cloth and tied with a cord. An attractive print with soft shading in the background and embossed detail on the white kimono collars and trim. The Boston Museum of Fine Arts has this image in its collection.
Artist - Chikanobu (1838 - 1912)
Image Size - 14" x 28"
Condition - This print with excellent detail as shown. Three attached panels, backed with paper. Vertical folds between panels. Slight toning and soiling, small wrinkles throughout, a few stains, light lines where backing papers meet. Please see photos for details.