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Ghosts

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Tsukioka Kogyo, Japanese, (1869–1927)
The Twilight Beauty, February 1, 1899
Ink on paper
9 15/16 in. x 14 11/16 in. (25.24 cm x 37.31 cm)


Object Type: Print
Technique: Wood-block Printing
Period: Meiji (Japan, 1869-1912)
Credit Line: Gift of Dr. Bruce A. Coats
Accession Number: 2009.7.31


Alternate Title: Nogaku zue: Yugao

Commentary
The ghost of Yugao, The Lady of the Evening Faces stands beneath a trellis of yugao vines with flowers and gourds Yugao herself is dressed in very traditional Japanese court costume and her outer robe is decorated with yugao flowers and fans. Her sleeve, though, extends beyond the frame of the composition in a very modern innovative way for 19th century prints.
Prof. Bruce Coats

This is a scene from the Japanese Noh play Yugao (Evening Faces), inspired by chapter four of the "Tale of Genji." Depicted is the ghost of Yugao, The Lady of the Evening Faces. One notable aspect is the clear contrast of modern and traditional in this image: Yugao is dressed in very traditional Japanese garb and she herself is a character from an ancient Japanese novel, but her pants are defined with clear shadows in the pleats (shadow is uncharacteristic for woodblock prints), and she is floating in grey and black space with a gourd vine, a more modern composition. The famous ukiyo-e woodblock print artist Yoshitoshi was Kogyo’s teacher, and his dedication to aspects of traditional culture in the face of a rapidly modernizing Japan is reflected here.

Chloe Elliott (student, 2016)

Object Description
Color woodblock print of a scene from the Noh play Yugao (Evening Faces). Inspired by Chapter 4 of the Tale of Genji, this Noh scene depicts the ghost of Yugao, The Lady of the Evening Faces.

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