Art on Tuesday: Toyokuni I

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Seven Aspects of Girls: Calligraphy – Actor Iwai Hanshirô  (1811). This is a ukiyo-e (woodblock-print) by Toyokuni I (1769-1825) , a Japanese artist,  illustrator and painter, who is famous for his art pictures of actors in Japan. Actors are a popular motif of ukiyo-e prints. She is reading a scroll, right to her on the table there are brushes, an ink stone and ink. Under the desk you can see a booklet with Japanese binding technique. Her kimono and hair is richly decorated and very beautiful. The Iris in the right corner of the picture is a flower planted in Japan since Edo times and its meaning is purity and protection. There is a picture in the picture showing probably the same actor in a different situation.

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