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Temples

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Kawase Hasui, Japanese, (1883–1957)
Kiyomizu Temple, Kyoto, 1933
Ink on Paper
14 1/4 in. x 9 7/16 in. (361.95 mm x 239.71 mm)


Object Type: Print
Technique: Wood-block Printing
Period: Showa (Japan, 1926-1989)
Credit Line: Gift of Mrs. Frederick S. Bailey
Accession Number: 54.1.80


Alternate Title: Nihon fukeishu Kansai hen: Kyoto Kiyomizu dera
Full Title: Collection of Scenic Views of Japan, Western Provinces: Kiyomizu Temple, Kyoto

Commentary
This woodblock print from the Scripps College collection by Kawase Hasui (1883–1957) of Kiyomizu Temple in Kyoto presents a deeply soothing portrait of an ancient temple in the gentle evening moonlight. Situated in the Eastern Hills of Kyoto, this Buddhist temple is famous for its tall pagoda, massive main hall and 13-meter high verandah that looks like a large wooden stage jutting out of the hillside. Over the centuries, this legendary temple has been associated with fire, tragedy and drama, and its historical, religious and architectural importance has drawn large crowds of pilgrims and tourists. However, rather than focus on the temple's famous verandah with its complex structure of pillars and beams that support its weight, or any of the dramatic and bloody stories told about the site, Hasui depicts the upper section of the verandah, now empty of the crowds of pilgrims and travelers. A lone, unidentified figure stands at one corner of the railing gazing out across the hillside toward the city below. Its many windows are lit with oil or gas lamps that shimmer in the distance like tiny stars. Above, we see two actual stars alone in the deep indigo night sky, and we can almost here the hum of the cicadas in the warm evening air.

Meher McArthur, Gabrielle Jungels-Winkler Curator of Academic Programs and Collections

Marks
Japanese text along the lower edge; Lower edge in pencil: "Kyotokiyomizu 1933 Hassai;" On mat in pencil: Kawase Hasui Kiyomizudera, Kyoto 1933, Bailey Collection VI 18; Label on verso, lower right: Bai VI-18. Signed: Hasui.

Medium
Colored ink on paper; woodblock print.

Object Description
Color woodblock print with a scene with a building, at night. In blue tones.

Publisher
Watanabe Shozburo.

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