Exploring East Asia

Take a look at some of the objects in our new Exploring East Asia gallery, which opened on 8 February 2019. Find out more about our new galleries here…
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Travelling salesmen carried their goods on their back or across their shoulders in large boxes. This vendor is selling bowls of hair oil.Hair oil was particularly important in the theatre district as it was used on actors' wigs. There are seven shops selling hair oil depicted in this handscroll.
Even 300 years ago people were bombarded with advertising: outside the theatres, barkers called to passers-by to entice them in, posters listed acts and displayed key scenes from plays, and billboards listed high-profile actors' names.
The puppets shown here in the scroll are performing a famous hair-shaving scene from a popular drama about the Soga brothers' revenge.Puppet theatre, or jōruri, was enjoyed by all ages. Each puppet is finely crafted and the articulated limbs are manipulated by skilled stagehands dressed in black.

The art of a theatre district handscroll

22 Pins
Colour woodblock print entitled Boshu Kamogawa (Kamogawa river, Awa province), depicting a boat on the shore: Japan, by Kawase Hasui, 1934
Sheet from colour woodblock print triptych, entitled Konrei no zu (Marriage Picture), depicting bride being led forward from her palanquin: by Utagawa Kuniyoshi, Edo, Japan, c. 1850
Colour woodblock print entitled Ishinomaki no bosetsu (Evening Snow at Ishinomaki): Japan, by Kawase Hasui, March 1935

Japanese Art

47 Pins
Netsuke of carved ivory, a dancer with a fox mask on his back accompanied by a small boy with a drum: Japan
Netsuke of carved ivory, a mountain ascetic (yamabushi) blowing a conch shell, unsigned: Japan
Netsuke of carved ivory, a man and a woman pounding mochi (rice cakes): Japan, by Gyokushu, 19th century

Netsuke

30 Pins
a figurine of two children holding an object in their hands and pointing at it
Netsuke of carved ivory, a dancer with a fox mask on his back accompanied by a small boy with a drum: Japan
a white figurine sitting on top of a table
Netsuke of carved ivory, a mountain ascetic (yamabushi) blowing a conch shell, unsigned: Japan
two figurines are sitting next to each other
Netsuke of carved ivory, a man and a woman pounding mochi (rice cakes): Japan, by Gyokushu, 19th century
two white ceramic figurines sitting next to each other
Netsuke of carved ivory, the gods Daikoku and Ebisu with the goddess Uzume or Okame, signed: Japan, by Tomochika III
a ceramic figurine of a man holding a baseball bat in his right hand
Netsuke of carved ivory, a man dancing, signed: Japan
an old figurine with two small children sitting on it's lap,
Netsuke of carved ivory, Jurojin seated with two boys in front holding a scroll: Japan, by Norishige, mid 19th century
a statue of a person holding a baby in their lap and sitting on the ground
Netsuke of carved ivory, Hotei? sitting holding a finger to his right eye at which a child gazes, behind him is a small green mask held by string, signed: Japan, 19th century
a ceramic figurine of a monkey sitting on the ground with its hands in his pockets
Netsuke of carved ivory, an old man sitting with a bird emerging from an egg, unsigned: Japan, 19th century
a statue of an old man holding a bucket and a shovel in one hand while standing on a white surface
Netsuke of carved ivory, man with a paper lantern and a stick, signed: Japan, by Tomotsugu
a small ceramic figurine with a woman holding a baby in her lap, on a white background
Netsuke of carved ivory, court lady kneeling in front of a screen, with poem on reverse, signed: Japan, by Tomotsugu, 18th century
a statue of an old man holding a staff
Netsuke of carved ivory, Hotei standing with a stick over his shoulder with a bundle at one end and a child at the other, unsigned: Japan
a statue of an old man holding a bowl
Netsuke of carved ivory, a Korean man sitting on a three-legged stool beating a tsuzumi drum held on his right shoulder, unsigned: Japan
a small figurine is sitting in a basket with a bird on it's back
Netsuke of carved ivory, Daikoku sitting on a bale of rice with a rat and a mallet, signed: Japan, by Rantei
a small buddha statue sitting on top of a white surface
Netsuke of carved ivory, a man standing with one foot on a basket, unsigned: Japan
a statue of a man with a hat on his head holding a cell phone to his ear
Netsuke of carved ivory, the general Guan Yu with a halberd, unsigned: Japan