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  • Thumbnail for Thorp Collection 165, Medecine Man - Yichang.
    Thorp Collection 165, Medecine Man - Yichang.

    This image and all others identified as ecasia000072 through ecasia000278, are scans of images from the James Thorp Collection, Earlham College. An explanation and description of the collection and its origin are included in the description of image I.D. ecasia000072, "Altar of Heaven at night, Beijing," the first Thorp image presented in this project collection.

  • Thumbnail for Landscapes of Japan, 14, Flat land used for cities, Tokyo viewed from the top of Tokyo Tower.
    Landscapes of Japan, 14, Flat land used for cities, Tokyo viewed from the top of Tokyo Tower.

    Flat land used for cities, Tokyo viewed from the top of Tokyo Tower. -- Flat land is scarce and very valuable in Japan. It is the most productive agricultural land, and also the easiest land upon which to build. Consequently. there is great competition and tension between development and agricultural interests. As the population increases and more people move from rural to urban areas, Japanese cities continue to expand and an increasing proportion of flat land is lost to agricultural and other uses.

  • Thumbnail for Coffee Makers and Juicers
    Coffee Makers and Juicers

    A display of high-tech coffee makers and juicers.

  • Thumbnail for Japanese Knick-knack Peddler
    Japanese Knick-knack Peddler

    A common sight in pre-war Japan, a peddler with a wide variety of goods was a blessing for the busy housewife.

  • Thumbnail for Noh Mask: Hannya
    Noh Mask: Hannya

    The Hannya "devil" mask expresses the violent anger and distress of a woman whose love and trust have been betrayed, turning her into a raging, revengeful female demon. The two horns protruding from disorderly hair evince diabolic malevolence, and the upper lip, tense and pointed in the center like a snake's, and the glinting of the metal eyes and teeth effectively add to her menace. This mask is attributed to the monk Hannya, who is said to have lived in Nara during the Muromachi period and to have originated this type of mask. A lesser form of the hannya mask is the Namanari mask.

  • Thumbnail for Noh Mask: Shikami
    Noh Mask: Shikami

    Shikami is one of the demon masks. His threatening expression, with scoowling eyes and bared fanglike teeht, well conveys his ferocity. Furrows are intensified with red and, as was often done in Noh demon masks to manifest rage, the eyes are highlighted in gold. - Matsushima Ken

  • Thumbnail for Ink-wash wooden wheel fan (side 1)
    Ink-wash wooden wheel fan (side 1)

    This fan features a genre scene in ink-wash style brushwork, The fan emerged in Japan by the 9th century AD. The Japanese have a long tradition of making wooden fans threaded together on the top of each rib. However, the size of this fan is large, and the format (circular when opened to its full extension) may be inspired by a type known as “big wheel fan,†attributed to Korea, during the Yi (Chosen) dynasty (1392-1910 AD). However, the brushwork, subject matter, and motifs of the paintings on the fans are Japanese. The size and weight of the fan might not have a practical function. The common motifs on Japanese wooden fans include stories from literature, such as the Tale of Genji.

  • Thumbnail for Chinese Inscribed Bronze Mirror (front)
    Chinese Inscribed Bronze Mirror (front)

    3 7/8" w. Includes 18 seal characters forming a frieze.

  • Thumbnail for Chinese Inscribed Bronze Mirror (front)
    Chinese Inscribed Bronze Mirror (front)

    3" w. Cast and decorated in relief with two men flanking the pierced dumbell-form knop and with eight Buddhist precious objects dispersed above and below. Narrow wedge shaped ridge.

  • Thumbnail for Chinese Inscribed Bronze Mirror (back)
    Chinese Inscribed Bronze Mirror (back)

    4 3/4" w. Astronomical mirror.

  • Thumbnail for Chinese Mutton Fat Jade with Wooden Stand (with stand)
    Chinese Mutton Fat Jade with Wooden Stand (with stand)

    3 7/8" l. Greenish-white jade with russet markings carved in an archaistic style standing dragon, handcarved fitted wood stand.

  • Thumbnail for Rakuchu Rakugai - "In and Around the City of Kyoto" - detail
    Rakuchu Rakugai - "In and Around the City of Kyoto" - detail

    Detail from right screen of an original pair of 6-fold screens; 67" H. x 142" W. (6 panels). The type originated in the Momoyama period, when they were presented to visiting warlords, to take home as a memento of their visit to Kyoto. This particular example is relatively late for the type, but a good example. The iconography for this particular type of screen pairs is set, and this example follows the program for the right hand screen of the original pair, depicting the colorful floats of the Gion Matsuri (Kyoto’s “signature†festival) in LR, and various Kyoto landmarks, like the Kiyomizudera (a temple with a veranda supported on high pilings) in the upper right.

  • Thumbnail for Rakuchu Rakugai - "In and Around the City of Kyoto" - detail
    Rakuchu Rakugai - "In and Around the City of Kyoto" - detail

    Detail of right screen of an original pair of 6-fold screens; 67" H. x 142" W. (6 panels). The type originated in the Momoyama period, when they were presented to visiting warlords, to take home as a memento of their visit to Kyoto. This particular example is relatively late for the type, but a good example. The iconography for this particular type of screen pairs is set, and this example follows the program for the right hand screen of the original pair, depicting the colorful floats of the Gion Matsuri (Kyoto’s “signature†festival) in LR, and various Kyoto landmarks, like the Kiyomizudera (a temple with a veranda supported on high pilings) in the upper right.

  • Thumbnail for Tanegashima Rifle case - detail of inscription
    Tanegashima Rifle case - detail of inscription

    Flint and safety pin lacking, but otherwise in excellent condition. So, too, is the lacquered, fitted case, with its identifying mon, or crest of the daimyo clan for whom it was made. The firearm refers to one of the most interesting periods of Japanese history, and can be dated to a fairly precise time period, because such weapons did not exist in Japan before they were introduced by the Portuguese in 1543. The Portuguese had been blown off course in a storm and made landfall at Tanegashima, a small island off the coast of Kyushu (hence the name "Tanegashima" Rifle). This weapon is much more rare than a samurai sword because the time when it was in use was of such short duration. Use of such guns was banned early in the Edo period. This rifle is heavy! Metal fittings with lion on butt end. On lower surface of the rifle, metal fittings, as in sword furniture, with cloud pattern near the end (cf. smoke from firing). Halfway down is a flaming jewel. Back near the trigger, a 3-clawed dragon form in the clouds. Behind the dragon is a character on a round metal insert; then the trigger; on the bottom of the butt, another character. On the sides of the shoulder piece is further decoration (left side, cherry blossoms; right side, kara-shishi [Chinese lion-dog), and on upper surface is peony, often associated with the lion-dog in Japanese decorative arts. Above the trigger is a samurai helmet; on the metal assembly is another character, prob. the maker's symbol. Lacquered case is shaped to fit the rifle, and bears the mon of a five-petaled flower with circular petals, possibly a plum, within a circle.

  • Thumbnail for Tanegashima Rifle - detail of lion motif
    Tanegashima Rifle - detail of lion motif

    Flint and safety pin lacking, but otherwise in excellent condition. So, too, is the lacquered, fitted case, with its identifying mon, or crest of the daimyo clan for whom it was made. The firearm refers to one of the most interesting periods of Japanese history, and can be dated to a fairly precise time period, because such weapons did not exist in Japan before they were introduced by the Portuguese in 1543. The Portuguese had been blown off course in a storm and made landfall at Tanegashima, a small island off the coast of Kyushu (hence the name "Tanegashima" Rifle). This weapon is much more rare than a samurai sword because the time when it was in use was of such short duration. Use of such guns was banned early in the Edo period. This rifle is heavy! Metal fittings with lion on butt end. On lower surface of the rifle, metal fittings, as in sword furniture, with cloud pattern near the end (cf. smoke from firing). Halfway down is a flaming jewel. Back near the trigger, a 3-clawed dragon form in the clouds. Behind the dragon is a character on a round metal insert; then the trigger; on the bottom of the butt, another character. On the sides of the shoulder piece is further decoration (left side, cherry blossoms; right side, kara-shishi [Chinese lion-dog), and on upper surface is peony, often associated with the lion-dog in Japanese decorative arts. Above the trigger is a samurai helmet; on the metal assembly is another character, prob. the maker's symbol. Lacquered case is shaped to fit the rifle, and bears the mon of a five-petaled flower with circular petals, possibly a plum, within a circle.

  • Thumbnail for Views of Osaka
    Views of Osaka

    One of a pair (originally) of 6-panel screens; each panel is 68" x 25".A pre-modern work, a variant, in the Edo Period, of the Rakuchu Rakugai type of views of Kyoto (see 1990.18.4). Here, we see scenes of Osaka. Suyari (clouds) applied in pieces.

  • Thumbnail for Toko
    Toko

    A display at a traditional Japanese bar shows beautiful pottery

  • Thumbnail for Clocks
    Clocks

    A blend of Western and Japanese style clocks for sale at a general store.

  • Thumbnail for Geisha
    Geisha

    Andrea Ritland and Emily Wiedenhoeft take time out from shopping in Asakusa to pose for a picture with a modern-day geisha.

  • Thumbnail for Wrinkle creams
    Wrinkle creams

    Wrinkle creams, only 12,000 Yen! (That's about $100).

  • Thumbnail for Noh Mask: Uba
    Noh Mask: Uba

    Uba, the mask of an old woman, is used primarily in Takasage, a play in which an old woman and her husband represent the spirits of two pine trees. On his way to the capital, Tomonari, a Shinto priest from he shrine of Aso in Kyushu, rests beneath the pines along the shore at Takasago in Harima Province. The old couple appear and sweep beneath the pines. They tell the priest of two aged pines, one here in Takasago and the other at Sumiyoshi in Settsu Province and of their auspicious associations. Tomonari goes to Sumiyoshi in the second half of the play, and a deity appears and performs a god dance. The Uba mask came to be also used for the roles of ordinary old women in other Noh plays. Typically, the eyes are carved as they are for the mask of a blind person. - Matshushima Ken

  • Thumbnail for Salmulnori
    Salmulnori

    This is the Korean traditional drumming originally used to keep the farmers spirits up. As time progressed, it was used more and more for other occasions. Seoul, South Korea.

  • Thumbnail for Wooden fan (side 2)
    Wooden fan (side 2)

    This fan has good detail and color quality, and is most likely inspired by a literary theme.The fan emerged in Japan by the 9th century AD. The Japanese have a long tradition of making wooden fans threaded together on the top of each rib. However, the size of this fan is large, and the format (circular when opened to its full extension) may be inspired by a type known as “big wheel fan,†attributed to Korea, during the Yi (Chosen) dynasty (1392-1910 AD). However, the brushwork, subject matter, and motifs of the paintings on the fans are Japanese. The size and weight of the fan might not have a practical function. The common motifs on Japanese wooden fans include stories from literature, such as the Tale of Genji.

  • Thumbnail for Chinese feather fan with birds and flowers (side 1 )
    Chinese feather fan with birds and flowers (side 1 )

    This fan displays a pair of peacocks and peonies and other flowers, which are common subjects in these types of fan. Although its condition is poor,it is a very interesting artifacts. The Chinese export of feather fans first appeared in Europe during the first quarter of the 19th century. They are usually made of goose feathers (occasionally with added peacock feathers on the top) mounted on sticks which can be made of a variety of materials, including ivory and bone. The frames of the fans are carved, showing the quality of their craftsmanship, with flowers and classical scripts, which could be either an imitation of Oracle bone characters or seal/clerical scripts. Originally these fans would have been very costly.

  • Thumbnail for Wooden fan (side 1 bird detail)
    Wooden fan (side 1 bird detail)

    This fan has good detail and color quality, and is most likely inspired by a literary theme.The fan emerged in Japan by the 9th century AD. The Japanese have a long tradition of making wooden fans threaded together on the top of each rib. However, the size of this fan is large, and the format (circular when opened to its full extension) may be inspired by a type known as “big wheel fan,†attributed to Korea, during the Yi (Chosen) dynasty (1392-1910 AD). However, the brushwork, subject matter, and motifs of the paintings on the fans are Japanese. The size and weight of the fan might not have a practical function. The common motifs on Japanese wooden fans include stories from literature, such as the Tale of Genji.