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  • Thumbnail for Hana chiru sato
    Hana chiru sato by Utagawa Kunisada (1786-1864)

    From the series "Faithful depictions of the figure of the shining prince" (Sono sugata Hikaru no utushi-e). Woodblock print; ink and colors on paper. This print is number 11 in the series. It is heavily trimmed along the left side and is missing its border. This print isfrom a series satirizing the Tale of Genji, the celebrated tenth century Japanese novel of Heian period courtly life, focusing on the assorted love affairs of Prince Genji and his clan. The Tale of Genji, by the court lady Murasaki Shikibu, is one of the most popular themes for illustrated book and paintings throughout Japanese history. The novel is renowned as the world's first novel. It includes 54 chapters, so most series have 54 prints plus a title page. These prints essentially parody the original in order to make the ancient subject more appealing to a contemporary audience. Therefore, the artist represented the figures in contemporary clothing and placed them in a modern setting.

  • Thumbnail for Umega-e - woodblock print
    Umega-e - woodblock print by Utagawa Kunisada (1786-1864)

    From the series: Faithful depictions of the figure of the shining prince (Sono sugata Hikaru no utushi-e). Woodblock print; ink and colors on paper. This print is number 32 in the series. The borders of this print has been trimmed. This print is from a series satirizing the Tale of Genji, the celebrated tenth century Japanese novel of Heian period courtly life, focusing on the assorted love affairs of Prince Genji and his clan. The Tale of Genji, by the court lady Murasaki Shikibu, is one of the most popular themes for illustrated book and paintings throughout Japanese history. The novel is renowned as the world's first novel. It includes 54 chapters, so most series have 54 prints plus a title page. These prints essentially parody the original in order to make the ancient subject more appealing to a contemporary audience. Therefore, the artist represented the figures in contemporary clothing and placed them in a modern setting.

  • Thumbnail for Japanese Temple Bell - inscription
    Japanese Temple Bell - inscription

    Shipped from Yokohama to the campus. The bell is inscribed with the following text in both English and Japanese: "Are we not all one family". Weight: 400 lbs; Diameter: 21.6 inches. A wooden ringer hangs on a post of the torii that supports and frames the bell. Library staff ring the bell at the end of each academic year. Location: basement of Beeghly Library. The library construction post-dates the bell and it appears the stairwell nook in which the bell resides, hovering over a very Japanese-looking bed of rocks, was designed specifically for this piece. Although this is not an old bell from a Japanese temple, it is an interesting, finely created example of the craft, showing the perpetuation of this craftmaking skill into the present age. It is a fitting symbol of friendship between the two cultures and typifies the Japanese propensity for spreading the doctrine of peace through traditional symbolic imagery in the post WW II era.

  • Thumbnail for Kozuka
    Kozuka

    Sheath for challenge knife (kozuka). Blackened steel and gold. Very fine workmanship and in excellent condition. This metal sheath is one of 16 in a two-layered lacquer box. Making sword fittings (menuki) has been an Art in Japan since the time of the machishu, the 17th c. Kyoto, Osaka, Sakai predecessors of the chonin of Edo (now Tokyo), the latter being the creators of Ukiyo-e. This sheath is of extremely high quality, something true of others in its group. Any are fit for a museum, but I chose this one because its decoration was so amusing. In Japan, the horse is a standard gift to a temple. When a horse is too expensive, a painting of a horse (ema) can be substituted. This knife sheath bears an image of an ema on one side. The square frame of the ema is shown and within it, a monkey holding a long line. The line goes outside the ema over to the other side of the sheath. There, the tethered horse gallops away.

  • Thumbnail for Kabuki Actor at his Dressing Table
    Kabuki Actor at his Dressing Table by Unidentified artist, possibly Utagawa Kunisada (1786-1864)

    Woodblock print, surimono type, ink, colors, and embossing on paper. Surimono were limited edition, fine quality prints produced for a small, select group of clients, in this case, fans of the actor portrayed.

  • Thumbnail for Ding Ware Bowl - top view
    Ding Ware Bowl - top view

    Low relief molded or carved design on interior; two phoenix birds & flowers. "Greek fret" row above them. Flower on bottom. Light celadon glaze, unglazed rim. One large and several small iron spots. Hairline crack c. 5 cm long down from edge.

  • Thumbnail for Seated Female
    Seated Female

    12 cm x 9 cm. Polychrome painting of unidentified seated female, medallion from larger painting in opaque watercolors on cotton (thanka paubha in Nepalese script at bottom left) red ground, badly abraded figure, segment of circular border at right, mounted on mat board.

  • Thumbnail for Bronze Chinese Mirror - detail
    Bronze Chinese Mirror - detail

    H: 3/4" W: 5-1/8". Mirror, bronze disc with light green and yellow patina. Obverse: polished; Reveres: decorative outer edge, inscribed inner edge, center boss raised with hole to attach mirror to support; square container of light wood with sliding lid.

  • Thumbnail for Sketches of Men and Things of Fuchou China: treading water pump
    Sketches of Men and Things of Fuchou China: treading water pump

    A (Western style) bound volume, consisting of 175 pages with text in English by a missionary, with ink drawings done by a Chinese artist. Text and drawings illustrate Chinese people and their activities with detailed depiction of tools and other objects, and activities of everyday life in Fuzhou. According to Susan Huntington, this sort of book was commonly produced by British missionaries to India. This was a very impressive, interesting group of pictures of daily life and people of China. The black ink sketches on the right hand pages are labeled in Chinese, often with English translations. The left-side pages are English descriptions of the activities and objects illustrated by the ink drawings. Nathan Sites was a minister of the Methodist Episcopal Church who served in Fuzhou between 1861-1895. He was the first Ohio Wesleyan University graduate to serve as a missionary. The book was designed and commissioned by Rev. and Mrs. Nathan Sites, Methodist missionaries to “Fuhchou.†Drawings were made by a Chinese artist. The purpose of the book was to show relatives and friends in America the customs of Chinese in “Fuhchou.†A letter written November 7th, 1863 appears at the beginning of the journal: “Dear Friends at Home: Feeling anxious to give you as clear an understanding as we possibly could of the people, their dress, employments, mode of life of this heathen country, we hit upon the following plan as the best to convey to your minds their appearance, manner and customs. Most of these sketches are really life-like. We have seen men and women engaged in many of the employments here sketched.â€

  • Thumbnail for Sketches of Men and Things of Fuchou China: meat seller
    Sketches of Men and Things of Fuchou China: meat seller

    A (Western style) bound volume, consisting of 175 pages with text in English by a missionary, with ink drawings done by a Chinese artist. Text and drawings illustrate Chinese people and their activities with detailed depiction of tools and other objects, and activities of everyday life in Fuzhou. According to Susan Huntington, this sort of book was commonly produced by British missionaries to India. This was a very impressive, interesting group of pictures of daily life and people of China. The black ink sketches on the right hand pages are labeled in Chinese, often with English translations. The left-side pages are English descriptions of the activities and objects illustrated by the ink drawings. Nathan Sites was a minister of the Methodist Episcopal Church who served in Fuzhou between 1861-1895. He was the first Ohio Wesleyan University graduate to serve as a missionary. The book was designed and commissioned by Rev. and Mrs. Nathan Sites, Methodist missionaries to “Fuhchou.†Drawings were made by a Chinese artist. The purpose of the book was to show relatives and friends in America the customs of Chinese in “Fuhchou.†A letter written November 7th, 1863 appears at the beginning of the journal: “Dear Friends at Home: Feeling anxious to give you as clear an understanding as we possibly could of the people, their dress, employments, mode of life of this heathen country, we hit upon the following plan as the best to convey to your minds their appearance, manner and customs. Most of these sketches are really life-like. We have seen men and women engaged in many of the employments here sketched.â€

  • Thumbnail for Sketches of Men and Things of Fuchou China: widow arch
    Sketches of Men and Things of Fuchou China: widow arch

    A (Western style) bound volume, consisting of 175 pages with text in English by a missionary, with ink drawings done by a Chinese artist. Text and drawings illustrate Chinese people and their activities with detailed depiction of tools and other objects, and activities of everyday life in Fuzhou. According to Susan Huntington, this sort of book was commonly produced by British missionaries to India. This was a very impressive, interesting group of pictures of daily life and people of China. The black ink sketches on the right hand pages are labeled in Chinese, often with English translations. The left-side pages are English descriptions of the activities and objects illustrated by the ink drawings. Nathan Sites was a minister of the Methodist Episcopal Church who served in Fuzhou between 1861-1895. He was the first Ohio Wesleyan University graduate to serve as a missionary. The book was designed and commissioned by Rev. and Mrs. Nathan Sites, Methodist missionaries to “Fuhchou.†Drawings were made by a Chinese artist. The purpose of the book was to show relatives and friends in America the customs of Chinese in “Fuhchou.†A letter written November 7th, 1863 appears at the beginning of the journal: “Dear Friends at Home: Feeling anxious to give you as clear an understanding as we possibly could of the people, their dress, employments, mode of life of this heathen country, we hit upon the following plan as the best to convey to your minds their appearance, manner and customs. Most of these sketches are really life-like. We have seen men and women engaged in many of the employments here sketched.â€

  • Thumbnail for Sketches of Men and Things of Fuchou China: inventory-contents of journal
    Sketches of Men and Things of Fuchou China: inventory-contents of journal

    A (Western style) bound volume, consisting of 175 pages with text in English by a missionary, with ink drawings done by a Chinese artist. Text and drawings illustrate Chinese people and their activities with detailed depiction of tools and other objects, and activities of everyday life in Fuzhou. According to Susan Huntington, this sort of book was commonly produced by British missionaries to India. This was a very impressive, interesting group of pictures of daily life and people of China. The black ink sketches on the right hand pages are labeled in Chinese, often with English translations. The left-side pages are English descriptions of the activities and objects illustrated by the ink drawings. Nathan Sites was a minister of the Methodist Episcopal Church who served in Fuzhou between 1861-1895. He was the first Ohio Wesleyan University graduate to serve as a missionary. The book was designed and commissioned by Rev. and Mrs. Nathan Sites, Methodist missionaries to “Fuhchou.†Drawings were made by a Chinese artist. The purpose of the book was to show relatives and friends in America the customs of Chinese in “Fuhchou.†A letter written November 7th, 1863 appears at the beginning of the journal: “Dear Friends at Home: Feeling anxious to give you as clear an understanding as we possibly could of the people, their dress, employments, mode of life of this heathen country, we hit upon the following plan as the best to convey to your minds their appearance, manner and customs. Most of these sketches are really life-like. We have seen men and women engaged in many of the employments here sketched.â€

  • Thumbnail for Chinese Lady's Changfu (third level informal court attire) robe with designs of flowers, bats, waves, butterflies, and clouds (edging detail)
    Chinese Lady's Changfu (third level informal court attire) robe with designs of flowers, bats, waves, butterflies, and clouds (edging detail)

    Roundels contain auspicious imagery--peonies and bats; bats are also featured in the wave pattern hem; and bats, flowers, and butterflies float freely outside the roundels on the front and back of the garment. Plain weave pale green satin ground with sections of dark blue ground on the sleeve; red, blue, yellow and orange satin stitch and seed (Peking) stitch silk thread embroidery. Length: 126 cm; sleeve length: 74 cm length. The ground color was probably originally darker, closer to turquoise. This garment is typical of its type in that it mimics the shape of men's garments. It was made for wives of officials who were required to wear the same type garments as their husbands. Both have eight roundels with embroidered designs, three in front, three in back, and one on each shoulder. The sleeves are cut wide and have bands filled with embroidered patterns between the large cuffs and the shoulders. Women's robes are distinguished from those worn by men by their high side slits and by their decorative motifs, as here, dominated by flowers, bats, and butterflies.

  • Thumbnail for Chinese Lady's Changfu (third level informal court attire) robe with designs of flowers, bats, waves, butterflies, and clouds (sleeve detail)
    Chinese Lady's Changfu (third level informal court attire) robe with designs of flowers, bats, waves, butterflies, and clouds (sleeve detail)

    Roundels contain auspicious imagery--peonies and bats; bats are also featured in the wave pattern hem; and bats, flowers, and butterflies float freely outside the roundels on the front and back of the garment. Plain weave pale green satin ground with sections of dark blue ground on the sleeve; red, blue, yellow and orange satin stitch and seed (Peking) stitch silk thread embroidery. Length: 126 cm; sleeve length: 74 cm length. The ground color was probably originally darker, closer to turquoise. This garment is typical of its type in that it mimics the shape of men's garments. It was made for wives of officials who were required to wear the same type garments as their husbands. Both have eight roundels with embroidered designs, three in front, three in back, and one on each shoulder. The sleeves are cut wide and have bands filled with embroidered patterns between the large cuffs and the shoulders. Women's robes are distinguished from those worn by men by their high side slits and by their decorative motifs, as here, dominated by flowers, bats, and butterflies.

  • Thumbnail for Chinese table (Board of Bishops detail)
    Chinese table (Board of Bishops detail) by Designed by Carl F. Kupfer, and made by Chinese students at Chinkiang Institute.

    Size: Height: 78.5 cm, length of the table-top: 118.5 cm, width of the table top: 71 cm. Material: Teakwood, Black Lacquer, and Mother of Pearl. The table was designed by Carl F. Kupfer. It was made of teakwood, black lacquer, and mother of pearl by Chinese students at Chinkiang Institute (a mission station) in 1899. No nails were used in its construction. The table is similar to one located in the Baldwin Wallace College Chapel. Both tables have the bishops’ likenesses and Chinese motifs. In the central rectangle of this table, there are figures representing the Board of Bishops of the Methodist Episcopal Church; at the corners of the rectangle, four small squares contain the likenesses of S. L. Baldwin, W. T. Smith, A. B. Leonard, and A. L. Palmer.

  • Thumbnail for Chinese woman's skirt - detail
    Chinese woman's skirt - detail

    Green ground satin with multi-colored satin stitch silk thread embroidery of floral designs. Length: 82 cm. Although the coat is not an elaborate example, the embroidery is finely executed and the piece is in decent condition. Its very nice to have this garment intact, to be able to see the embroidery panels on the sleeves, which are often removed and used in the West as decorative wall panels. As for the skirt, the embroidery is finely executed but obviously not as meticulous as earlier Qing examples. Still, as securely datable garments, these are good indicators of the quality of traditional clothing of their day. That they were made for a foreigner is also interesting, as they reflect the vogue of fashion conscious ladies of that time for Asian art (which was being avidly collected in the West).

  • Thumbnail for Chinese woman's coat - front
    Chinese woman's coat - front

    Yellow ground figured satin with design of butterflies, flowers, and auspicious objects, and satin stitch silk thread and couched gold thread embroidery with designs of flowers and butterflies. Sleeves have embroidery on green ground silk; center panel and border panel of blue ground silk. Length: 91 cm

  • Thumbnail for Rite of the Great Compassion Repentance, with Notation
    Rite of the Great Compassion Repentance, with Notation

    Woodblock print, accordion-folded book; ink on paper. The ritual text of the Dabei chanyi hejie is itself is a pared down version of longer eleventh century manual for the great compassion repentance (titled, Qianshouyan dabei xinzhou xingfa, or "Rite [for Recitation] of the Dharani of Great Compassion of Thousand Armed and Eyed [Guanyin]," which can be found in Taisho daizokyo, vol. 46, T no. 1950). The original 11th century manual was authored by Siming Zhili (960-1038), one of the most influential Tiantai masters of the Northern Song period. The rite of the "great compassion repentance" has been enormously popular among Chinese Buddhists throughout the later imperial period (and not just Tiantai circles), with Zhili's manual serving as the principal guide to its performance. (Actually, this is also the origin of the Soto-shu's Kannon senbo, which comes out of Song China and is based on Zhili's text). Precisely when the shortened version of the rite -- i.e., the abridged rite reflected in the Dabei chanyi hejie -- actually took shape is not entirely clear, but it appears to have been used widely in the late Ming and Qing Dynasties, if not earlier. A number of printings of the Dabei chanyi hejie were apparently done in the 19th century (above information courtesy of Prof. Daniel Stevenson, University of Kansas, a specialist in Chinese Buddhism).

  • Thumbnail for Chinese table (top surface)
    Chinese table (top surface) by Designed by Carl F. Kupfer, and made by Chinese students at Chinkiang Institute.

    Size: Height: 78.5 cm, length of the table-top: 118.5 cm, width of the table top: 71 cm. Material: Teakwood, Black Lacquer, and Mother of Pearl. The table was designed by Carl F. Kupfer. It was made of teakwood, black lacquer, and mother of pearl by Chinese students at Chinkiang Institute (a mission station) in 1899. No nails were used in its construction. The table is similar to one located in the Baldwin Wallace College Chapel. Both tables have the bishops’ likenesses and Chinese motifs. In the central rectangle of this table, there are figures representing the Board of Bishops of the Methodist Episcopal Church; at the corners of the rectangle, four small squares contain the likenesses of S. L. Baldwin, W. T. Smith, A. B. Leonard, and A. L. Palmer.

  • Thumbnail for One of the 12 Guardian Generals of Yakushi - back view
    One of the 12 Guardian Generals of Yakushi - back view

    16.5 inches in height. Originally painted; much has worn away. Inlaid eyes. Modern base. Almost a dancing stance, w. left foot partially raised, right hand on hip, left hand extended. The DePauw label identifies it as a Guardian Figure of Shogun Jizo, but this does not make sense; it is clearly not Jizo, as Jizo is a bodhisattva who is shown with a shaved head and dressed as a Buddhist priest; he is not a shogun, and not a guardian figure. It appears rather to be one of the Junishinsho (12 Guardian Generals) of Yakushi, the Buddha of Medicine and Healing. There is one general to guard each of 12 Vows of Healing that Yakushi was believed to have made. The most famous examples of this type of guardian figure are at Shin-Yakushiji in Nara (8th c.), and at Muroji (9th c.)

  • Thumbnail for Two Balinese Shadow Puppets (puppet 1 face)
    Two Balinese Shadow Puppets (puppet 1 face)

    Height: 50 cm Material: Gilt wood; one wearing silk shot through with gold over cotton petticoats, the other wearing a cotton dress. Balinese puppets came from the small island of Bali. “They are made of painted leather or wood and adorned with splendid garments, mantles, diadems, necklaces...their expressions are either ecstatic or demonic...These figures represent jinn, demons, heroes, and divinities from Indian mythology and legend†(Encyclopedia of World Art). The Bali puppets at Beeghly Library are not the flat-leather puppets (of wayang-kulit) which performed before screens, but are wayang-golek, “a completely rounded wooden figure that was developed in Java, it is less powerful because it is more photographic†(McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Art).

  • 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 Indian Text Written on Palm Leaves entitled: Rahasya (Mystery) (leaves spread out)
    Indian Text Written on Palm Leaves entitled: Rahasya (Mystery) (leaves spread out)

    Width: 37 cm. Material: wood and green palm leaves; housed in a silk-covered hammered metal cylinder Date of text, 18th century; container possibly Chinese made later to house this document. This Sanskrit text is entitled “Rahasya†or Mystery and it is ascribed to Brahma. The Mystery contains religious legends. The Mystery is written on palm leaves in Grantham characters. The palm leaves were allowed to yellow to make the written characters more visible.

  • Thumbnail for Chinese woman's coat - detail
    Chinese woman's coat - detail

    Yellow ground figured satin with design of butterflies, flowers, and auspicious objects, and satin stitch silk thread and couched gold thread embroidery with designs of flowers and butterflies. Sleeves have embroidery on green ground silk; center panel and border panel of blue ground silk. Length: 91 cm

  • Thumbnail for Fire Foxes or "Ghost Foxes"
    Fire Foxes or "Ghost Foxes" by Shirasuka Hiroshige

    8-5/8" x 12-1/2". Print, woodcut. Part of "100 Views of Edo" series. Title, Subtitle, Signature, Censor's, Publisher's and date seal in margin.