Photo, Print, Drawing Twelve Months by Toyokuni: First Dancing Practice of the New Year.
About this Item
- Twelve Months by Toyokuni: First Dancing Practice of the New Year.
- This nishiki-e (Japanese multicolored woodblock print) is one of a 12-part series depicting annual events and the changing of people's lives with the seasons, from January to December, modeled on beautiful women in Edo (present-day Tokyo) in the early 19th century. This picture, a happy and brilliant scene that symbolizes the New Year, represents January and is titled in the top left-hand corner. It shows two young women having their first dancing practice of the New Year to a shamisen accompaniment. The dance is Harukoma, which expresses the wish for health and prosperity throughout the year. The two dancers are each holding a horse's head puppet with a scarf representing a bridle. Their long-sleeved kimonos have a pattern of plovers, the waterfowl that from ancient times has represented winter in Japan. The women's red under-garments have a hemp-leaf pattern, a popular motif at the time, as hemp is a strong, fast-growing plant. Their black obis have wave-like swirls. The screens in the background show young pines and full-blown ume (Japanese apricot) blossoms. The pine tree has a strong life force and signifies prosperity, while the ume, which blossoms in the coldest season, is the flower that celebrates the New Year in Japan. At the bottom of the picture are printed the artist's name, the year 1854, and the names of the publisher and the engraver. Utagawa Toyokuni III (circa 1786-1864) was a prolific artist in the ukiyo-e style, who also produced many book illustrations. He flourished at around the same time as Utagawa Hiroshige I (1797--1858) and Katsushika Hokusai (1760--1849).
- Utagawa, Toyokuni, 1786-1865 Artist.
Created / Published
- Edo : Tsutaya Kichizo, 1854.
- - Japan
- - 1854
- - Apricot trees
- - Clothing and dress
- - Dance
- - Folk dancing
- - Musical instruments
- - New Year
- - Pine
- - Puppets
- - Ukiyo-e
- - Woodcuts
- - Title devised, in English, by Library staff.
- - Original resource extent: Set of three : woodblock prints, color ; 37 x 25.5 centimeters.
- - Reference extracted from World Digital Library: Ted Heckathorn. "Kane, Elisa Kent," American National Biography (New York: Oxford University Press, 2000).
- - Original resource at: National Diet Library.
- - Content in Japanese.
- - Description based on data extracted from World Digital Library, which may be extracted from partner institutions.
- 1 online resource.
Library of Congress Control Number
- compressed data
Additional Metadata Formats
IIIF Presentation Manifest
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Credit Line: [Original Source citation], World Digital Library
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Cite This Item
Citations are generated automatically from bibliographic data as a convenience, and may not be complete or accurate.
Chicago citation style:
Utagawa, Toyokuni, Artist. Twelve Months by Toyokuni: First Dancing Practice of the New Year. Japan, 1854. Edo: Tsutaya Kichizo. Photograph. https://www.loc.gov/item/2021668771/.
APA citation style:
Utagawa, T. (1854) Twelve Months by Toyokuni: First Dancing Practice of the New Year. Japan, 1854. Edo: Tsutaya Kichizo. [Photograph] Retrieved from the Library of Congress, https://www.loc.gov/item/2021668771/.
MLA citation style:
Utagawa, Toyokuni, Artist. Twelve Months by Toyokuni: First Dancing Practice of the New Year. Edo: Tsutaya Kichizo. Photograph. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, <www.loc.gov/item/2021668771/>.