New Year’s Visit to Shrines in Auspicious Directions, 11/1896, no day indicated
Ink on Paper
14 in. x 28 1/16 in. (35.56 cm x 71.28 cm)
Signed: Yoshu Chikanobu
Colored ink woodblock triptych (3 oban tate-e).
A mother and daughter join others in a pilgrimage on New Year's Day to Shinto shrines and Buddhist temples in the auspicious directions from where they live, in order to obtain good luck and prosperity in the coming year. The hall at left is festooned with special decorations that hang from the eaves and with kadomatsu (arrangements of cut bamboo stalks, pine boughs and plum branches that flank the stone steps to the altar area). In front of the shrine is a Shinto priest, dressed in traditional court costume. At the water basin, one woman rinses her hands while the other dries hers. The woman at center holds an offering wrapped in white paper. The various glances among the pilgrims suggest familiarity, as if these are neighbors who have come out to greet the local deities and each other at the neighborhood shrines.
For more information, please refer to the Chikanobu exhibition catalogue.
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