Children's World Depicted in Ukiyo-e of the Meiji Period

Planned Exhibition
Children's World Depicted in Ukiyo-e of the Meiji Period

Exhibition Overview

When looking closely at the children depicted in ukiyo-e, one sees many children who convey the atmosphere of their time period through their tiny bodies. ukiyo-e of the Meiji period depict children living their lives to the fullest, while studying and playing, amid changes taking place in society due to Westernization.

At the beginning of the Meiji period, when schools started offering education influenced by the West, ukiyo-e begin to show children dressed in Western clothing learning in school. This artwork can be said to depict images of children considered ideal at the time. ukiyo-e that included English words and depicted the lives of great Western men started to be created, serving as learning materials for boys and girls who sought success in life with an eye on the world outside Japan.

This was a time in which the scents of the Edo period still lingered in the back streets of the city. After some time passed since the beginning of the Meiji period, people increasingly felt nostalgia for the Edo days, and ukiyo-e again depicted cute children dressed in kimono who brought back sweet memories. ukiyo-e artists born in the Meiji period such as Miyagawa Shuntei and Yamamoto Shoun depicted in detail children who inherited the culture of playing that blossomed in the Edo period, and these were highly popular. Old-school omocha-e (toy prints) continued to be created, and these remained as toys that captured the hearts of children, no matter the time period.

This exhibition is an attempt to take another look at children playing and learning amid the new wave of Westernization while there were still vestiges of the Edo period, through ukiyo-e and materials of the period. Roughly 300 pieces will be displayed. In addition to ukiyo-e depicting children, the exhibition will showcase ukiyo-e for children such as ukiyo-e used as school teaching materials full of hope for the future and omocha-e and monogatari-e (story ukiyo-e) that nurture dreams. We hope that you will see how colorful the visual world of the children of the Meiji period was, while also getting a glimpse of adults watching over the children as they grow.

Exhibition Information


























DurationSaturday 7 OctoberーThursday 23 November 2017
ClosedMondays
(Open on Monday (national holiday), October 9; Closed on Tuesday, October 10)
HoursWeekdays: 10:00-17:00 (visitors must enter by 16:30)
Saturdays, Sundays and national holidays: 10:00-17:30 (visitors must enter by 17:00)
VenueSpecial Exhibition Room 1・2, Machida City Museum of Graphic Arts
AdmissionGeneral visitors: 800 (600) yen
College and high school students/Senior citizens 65 years old or older: 400 (300) yen
Special cooperation byKumon Institute of Education, Tamagawa University Museum of Education
Planning and Coordination byMangosteen
Next exhibition venue and dateAshikaga Museum of Art
July 14 - September 2, 2018

*Free admission for junior high school students and younger
*Free admission on October 7 (the opening day) and November 3 (Culture Day)
*The fees shown in parentheses are for groups of 20 visitors or more
*Half price for visitors who bring a Physical Disability Certificate, Rehabilitation Certificate, or Mental Disability Certificate, and one person accompanying them

Children's World Depicted in Ukiyo-e of the Meiji Period flyer PDF[3.28MB] *Japanese Only
Children's World Depicted in Ukiyo-e of the Meiji Period press release PDF[4.48MB] *Japanese Only

Highlights

A collection of kodomo ukiyo-e (children’s ukiyo-e) from all over!


Ukiyo-e depicting children and ukiyo-e made for children are called kodomo ukiyo-e. This was an important ukiyo-e genre from the Edo period to the Meiji period, along with genres such as bijinga (prints of beautiful women) and yakusha-e (prints of kabuki actors). At this exhibition, we will present various cute kodomo ukiyo-e from the Meiji period. This will be the first-ever large exhibition featuring kodomo ukiyo-e from the Meiji period.

There will be lots of fun things to do!

All sorts of events will be offered for kids and adults alike to enjoy, including activity corners where you can touch and play, workshops and book readings. Please visit and become familiar with how children played in the Meiji period.

Yamamoto Shoun, “Ima Sugata - Odoroki” (Fashions of Today - Surprise), 1906, Collection of Machida City Museum of Graphic Arts

Exhibition Details

Part 1: The Sounds of Westernization
We will follow the various phases of Westernization seen through ukiyo-e, from the cityscapes of the new city of Tokyo to English learning.

Part 2: The Birth of Schools and Ukiyo-e that Served as Learning Materials
After schools were established through the introduction of the educational system, ukiyo-e called kyoiku nishiki-e (educational color prints) became widely used as educational materials. This exhibit features learning materials that were actually used as well as ukiyo-e and sugoroku (board games) that have school life as their subject matter.

Part 3: Watching Over Children - Chikanobu / Shuntei / Shoun
We present numerous cute kodomo-e by three unique ukiyo-e artists who were active during the Meiji period: Yoshu Chikanobu, Miyagawa Shuntei and Yamamoto Shoun. Although they have depicted the manners and customs of the Meiji period, vestiges of the Edo period can be seen in the children dressed in kimono.

Part 4: A Large Pictorial Book of Child’s Play
The exhibit features tsukushi-e (pictures of all sorts of people, animals or things) in which animals and children fill the artwork as well as omocha-e such as kumiage-e (paper models) and kisekae-e (dress-up pictures), which are paper craft toys that are built and played with. Furthermore, we present a zoetrope and a slide projector, which are the roots of animation and projection, as well as early children’s books that nurtured children’s dreams.

Related Events

Memorial Lecture: “Mother and Child Depicted in Ukiyo-e



画像
Toyohara Kunichika, “Mitate Chuya Nijuyo-ji no Uchi - Gozen Roku-ji” (Scenes of the Twenty-Four Hours - 6 a.m.), 1890, Collection of Machida City Museum of Graphic Arts

Speaker: Fujisawa Murasaki
(Professor at Kokugakuin University, Executive Director of the International Ukiyo-e Society)
Date: Saturday, 11 November, 14:00-15:30
Venue: Lecture Hall on the 1st floor

* Seating capacity: 120, on a first-come basis (no registration necessary)
* Free admission. However, visitors of high-school age and older must present an exhibition ticket (ticket stub is acceptable).
* Sign language interpretation available

Experiencing the Techniques for Creating Ukiyo-e - Live Demonstration of Printing and Lecture



We have invited a suri-shi (printer) who has inherited the traditional techniques of ukiyo-e. This suri-shi will actually print Katsushika Hokuksai’s “Thirty-six Views of Mount Fuji - Fine Wind, Clear Morning”. Please enjoy watching “Red Fuji” being printed along with a detailed explanation by Watanabe Shoichiro.

Speaker: S. Watanabe Color Print Co.
Date: Saturday, 28 October; First session: 11:00-12:30, Second session: 14:30-16:00
Venue: Lecture Hall on the 1st floor

* Seating capacity for each session: 120, on a first-come basis (no registration necessary)
* Free admission. However, visitors of high-school age and older must present an exhibition ticket (ticket stub is acceptable).

Let’s Fold and Create - Omocha-e Workshop

画像
Utagawa Kunitoshi, “Shinban Musha no Orikawari-e” (New Edition - Warrior Fold and Change Print), Meiji period, Collection of Kumon Institute of Education

This is an omocha-e workshop presented by COCHAE, a design team creating play-based, design-related puzzles and origami. Let’s create original omocha-e while imagining how children of the Meiji period felt!

Speaker: COCHAE
Date: Saturday, 4 November
First session: 11:00-12:30
Second session: 14:30-16:00
Venue: Lecture Hall on the 1st floor

* Maximum number of participants for each session: 20 (advance registration required)
* Free admission. However, visitors of high-school age and older must present an exhibition ticket (ticket stub is acceptable).



■How to apply
:Machida City Event Telephone: 042-724-5656 (7:00-19:00, year round)
町田市イベント申込システム「イベシス」Machida City Event Application System “EVESYS”
 Search the event by a keyword, or the event code “171006H” during the reception period of application.

■ Application period
:Friday, 6 October (from 12:00) - Tuesday, 31 October (until 19:00)
“EVESYS” Tuesday, 31 October (until 23:59)

■How to select audience members
First-come, first-served basis


▶COCHAE OFFICIAL WEBSITE


Book Reading at a Museum - A Time for a Picture Book and Talking

画像
Yamamoto Shoun, “Ima Sugata - Osuzumi” (Fashions of Today - Cooling Off), 1906, Collection of Kumon Institute of Education

We will offer a narration based on exhibited artwork and a reading of a picture book. Please enjoy this together with young children!

Speaker: Ohanashi Hasu no Mi
Date: Saturday, 21 October and Tuesday, November 7
14:00-14:30 on each day
Target audience: Infants, toddlers and elementary school students to adults
Venue: Hi-Vision Gallery on the 1st floor

* Seating capacity for each day: 15, on a first-come basis (no registration necessary)
* Free admission

A Museum for 0-year-olds and Up - Family Enjoyment Session

画像
Shimeichi, “Shinpan Akasama Asobi” (New Edition - Babies Playing), 1885, from the Aoki Collection (loaned to the Chiba City Museum of Art)

You can view the artwork together with your baby. The entire family can look for their favorite artwork while surrounded by various colors and shapes.

Speaker: Tomita Megumi (representative director, NPO Akachan Kara no Art Friendship Kyokai
Date: Wednesday, 15 November, 10:30-11:30
Target audience: 0-year-olds to pre-school children and their guardians.
Maximum number of participants: 15 groups (advance registration required)

* Please gather in the Lecture Hall on the 1st floor, and we will then move to the Exhibition Room
* Guardians must present an exhibition ticket valid for that day.


■How to apply
:Machida City Event Telephone: 042-724-5656 (7:00-19:00, year round)
町田市イベント申込システム「イベシス」Machida City Event Application System “EVESYS”
 Search the event by a keyword, or the event code “171006J” during the reception period of application.

■ Application period
:Friday, 6 October (from 12:00) - Tuesday, 7 November (until 19:00)
* “EVESYS”Tuesday, 7 November (until 23:59)

■How to select audience members
First-come, first-served basis


Play Together and Travel Back in Time to the Meiji Period

画像
Miyagawa Shuntei, “Kodomo Fuzoku Takeuma” (Manners and Customs of Children - Stilts), 1897, Collection of Machida City Museum of Graphic Arts

How did children play during the Meiji period? Experience their playing depicted in ukiyo-e!

Speaker: NPO Kodomo Hiroba Asobe Kodomotachi
Date: Saturday, 14 October, 10:30-15:00
Venue: Front yard of the museum

* No registration necessary
* Free admission
* You can participate any time while the event is being held. You can enter or leave freely.

Commentary of Artwork

(1) Special talk by the Museum Director
Sunday, 12 November, in the Temporary Exhibition Room
(2) Gallery talk by the Curator in Charge
Friday, 27 October and Sunday, November 19 in the Temporary Exhibition Room
(3) Slide talk by the Curator in Charge
Sunday, October 8 in the Lecture Hall on the 1st floor

* Each session starts at 14:00 and will last for approximately 45 minutes
* For (1) and (2), please come to the venue directly with an exhibition ticket valid for that day.

Let’s Talk at the Museum – Free-Talk Day

On Wednesdays and Saturdays while the exhibition is being held
This is an attempt to have visitors enjoy talking about the artwork rather than observe silence for viewing artwork.
Please feel free to visit on these days, even if you have small children.


町田市立国際版画美術館 〒194-0013 東京都町田市原町田4-28-1 連絡先 電話 042-726-2771/0860/2889