July - Tanabata Festival at Mitsuke Crossing, May 1889
Ink on Paper
14 3/16 in. x 28 1/16 in. (36 cm x 71.2 cm)
Text banners in the upper right and lower right of the right panel. Script printed in the lower area of the right panel.
Colored ink woodblock triptych on paper.
This triptych series entitled "Edo Customs of the 12 Months" (Edo fuzoku juni-gatsu no uchi) published in 1889 carefully documented some seasonal celebrations and their typical locations before Western influences changed them. In this scene for July, Chikanobu provides a panoramic view of a large plaza-like area between the Sujikai Gate and the Kanda River embankment. In this print, various groups of young and old are shown enjoying the night air, while a daimyo procession goes by. Chikanobu's representation of such a social mix is notable, and suggests that he remembers a more fluid society in the late Edo. Banners attached to bamboo poles indicate this is the evening of the 7th day of the 7th month, the Tanabata Festival when star gazing and poetry writing was popular.
For more information, please refer to the Chikanobu exhibition catalogue.
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