Cloisonné dish, Japan, 19th century. Museum no. M.208-1917
Copper body, cloisonné enamel decoration
Diameter 21.6 cm
Museum no. M.208-1917
The copper body of this dish has been decorated with silver wire cloisonné enamel designs on a pure white enamel ground; the rims and foot-ring are of plain burnished copper. The shape, decorative style and colouring of the dish closely copy eighteenth century Japanese Nabeshima-style porcelain which had gained popularity with Westerners in the late nineteenth century. The cloisonné enamel decoration of the dish which consists of geometric patterns with key-fret and stylised waves together with scrolling karakusa (Chinese grass) foliage are all typical of decorative elements found on Nabeshima-ware.
Futon cover, Japan, 19th century. Museum no. T.331-1960
Cotton with rasuri (resist-dyed) decoration
Museum no. T.331-1960
A futon cover with large white chrysanthemums amongst violent swirling waves, with four roundels at each corner of formalised flowers in black, white and grey.
Kabuki Actor Ichikawa Omezo I, Japan, c.1810. Museum no. E.4829-1886
'The Kabuki Actor Ichikawa Omezô I in the Drama "Shibaraku"'
Utagawa Toyokuni (1769-1825)
Nishiki-e (brocade print)
Signature: Toyokuni ga
Museum no. E.4829-1886
This is most likely a depiction of a production performed at the Morita-za Theatre in November 1810. In the Meiji period (1868-1912), the script of the play 'Shibaraku' (Wait!) became fixed and the name of the main character was designated as Kamakura no Gongorô Kamemasa. Originally, however, the plot and the characters were created afresh each time it was performed.
Woodblock printed book, Japan, 18th century. Museum no. E.6961-1916
Woodblock printed book
Page from Genji Hinagata
Late 18th century
Museum no. E.6961-1916
A page from Genji Hinagata, an epic of medieval Japan.
Netsuke, Japan, 18th century. Museum no. W.151:2-1922
Museum no. W.151:2-1922
Carved ivory netsuke in the shape of a bell, symbolising the pure sound of the doctrine of perfect wisdom.
Kimono, Japan, 1870-1880. Museum no. FE.29-1987
Crepe silk (chirimen), paste-resist decoration (yuzen) and embroidery
Width 129 cm x height 169 cm
Museum no. FE.29-1987
This elegantly patterned kimono celebrates the beauty of textiles through its decoration, which depicts lengths of fabric hung on an elaborate stand and gently fluttering in the breeze surrounded by clouds, fans and falling cherry blossoms. The design was created using a technique called yuzen. This involves drawing the pattern on the cloth with rice paste extruded through the metal tip of a cloth bag. The paste forms a protective coat that prevents the colour penetrating when the dyes are applied. Here the skills of the dyer have been enhanced by those of the embroider, who has highlighted the stand and the edges of the fabrics in gold and added flowers, blossoms and elaborate ties and tassels in pink, white and green.
The Cascade at Kirifuri by Hokusai, Japan, 1760-1849. Museum no. E.653-1901
'The Cascade of Kirifuri, near Nikko'
Katsushika Hokusai (1760 - 1849)
Woodblock print on paper
Museum no. E.653-1901
A view of the falls near Nikko.
Book of illustrated prints, Japan, 1826. Museum no. E.2923-1925
Book of illustrated prints
Designs by Korin
Copy by Hoitsu
Museum no. E.2923-1925
Pages from an illustrated book of Japanese prints; with a print on each page; left - a seascape with a raging sea, and a rocky cliff, with a small rocky island which has a knarled tree growing on it, signature on the left. Right is another seacape with a stormy sea with cliffs.
Scroll box & cover or jikubako, Japan, c.1650. Museum no. 701-1901
Scroll box and cover (jikubako)
Museum no. 701-1901
Scroll box and cover (jikubako) in black lacquer with gold hiromaki-e lacquer and silver metal fittings, with a pattern of waves on cream background