Featured Topic: Kabuki

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Kabuki Theatre of Japan
The British Museum
Online presentation of the 2005 exhibition , which examined the famous rivalry between the Kabuki actors Rikan and Shikan. Features 24 images, each with explanatory text. An excellent introduction to aspects of Kabuki, including history, audiences, music, costumes, roles, and actors.

Go to Museum Resource: http://www.britishmuseum.org/explore/online_tours/japan/kabuki_theatre_of_japan...
Art of the Pleasure Quarters and the Ukiyo-e Style
The Metropolitan Museum of Art
A lengthy discussion of the social developments in the Edo period that gave rise to literary and visual arts such as kabuki theater and ukiyo-e paintings and woodblock prints. With 5 related artworks.

Go to Museum Resource: http://www.metmuseum.org/toah/hd/plea/hd_plea.htm
Dream Worlds: Modern Japanese Prints and Paintings from the Robert O. Muller Collection
Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery, Smithsonian Institution
A selection of prints and paintings from the 1890s to the 1930s, with a focus on three types of images: 1) Creatures Real and Imagined (images of nature); 2) Stage Presence (image of kabuki actors); 3) Beauty Personified (images of women). Also with a special section on the screen-printing process.

Go to Museum Resource: http://www.asia.si.edu/exhibitions/online/dreamWorlds/base.html
The Floating World of Ukiyo-e: Shadows, Dreams, and Substance
Library of Congress
Online presentation of a 2003 exhibition showcasing the Library's holdings of Japanese prints, books, and drawings from the 17th to the 19th century. Images organized into the following categories: 1) Early Masters (1600-1740); 2) Major Genres: Beauties, Actors, and Landscapes; 3) Images and Literary Sources; 4) Realia and Reportage; 5) Japan and the West: Artistic Cross-Fertilization; 6) Beyond Ukiyo-e: Modern and Contemporary Japanese Prints. The EXHIBITION OVERVIEW provides historical background about ukiyo-e.

Go to Museum Resource: http://www.loc.gov/exhibits/ukiyo-e/
Masterful Illusions: Japanese Prints from the Anne van Biema Collection
Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery, Smithsonian Institution
"Dreams, ghosts, heroes, and villains appear in compelling images drawn from popular tales, legends, history, and theater. Lyrical and poetic themes provide a contrasting tone of elegance and aesthetic subtlety. Kabuki actors, the stars of the urban "floating world" of Edo Japan, are a focus of the collection." Online presentation of a 2002-03 exhibition, with a selection of 10 prints from the original exhibition, all with descriptions.

Go to Museum Resource: http://www.asia.si.edu/exhibitions/online/vanbiema/default.html
Nagoya TV Ukiyo-e Museum
Nagoya Broadcasting Network
A virtual museum of ukiyo-e prints from the collection of the Nagoya Broadcasting Network. "The collection not only contains prints beginning with Hishikawa Moronobu, who is considered to be the founder of Ukiyo-e, going all the way to prints from around the end of the Edo Period, but also contains local prints such as Kamigata-e, Nagasaki-e, Yokohama-e Kaika-e (blossoming prints), as well as more recent prints from the Meiji, Taisho, and Showa eras. As the works vary in diversity, one is able to trace the history of wood-block prints since the Edo Period." Select ENTER THE COLLECTION TO see works by a particular artist; select LIST OF THE COLLECTION to see works in a particular subject area (select from PORTRAIT, LANDSCAPE, KABUKI & SUMO, and ECCENTRIC CHARACTERS at the top of the page). With descriptions in Japanese and English.

Go to Museum Resource: http://www.nagoyatv.com/ukiyoe/
Prints & Photographs Online Catalog: Fine Prints, Japanese, pre-1915
Library of Congress
"The Library's Prints and Photographs Division houses more than 2,500 woodblock prints and drawings by Japanese artists of the seventeenth through early twentieth centuries including Hiroshige, Kuniyoshi, Sadahide, and Yoshiiku. ... About seventy percent of the collection is currently available online." The BACKGROUND AND SCOPE section has selections from the collection organized into the following categories: Actors; Women; Landscapes; Scenes from Japanese Literature; Daily Life; Views of Western Foreigners. Also with brief discussions of ukiyo-e and Yokohama-e prints, the latter being the images of foreigners in the port city of Yokohama produced by Japanese artists following the 1852-54 expedition of Commodore Matthew Perry (1794-1858).

Go to Museum Resource: http://www.loc.gov/pictures/collection/jpd
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