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Exhibit Catalog to the Morris County Historical Society's "Out of the Closet" Exhibition

Ukiyo-e Glossary

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Terms that may be useful for understanding the works found in the Morris County Historical Society's Japanese print collection.
 
 
aratame - "examined"; government-sanctioned censorship seal appearing on prints from 1811 until 1875
 
bijin-ga - "picture of a beautiful person;" most often used to describe pictures of beautiful women
 
-e - "picture"
 
emen no mie - a kabuki acting technique in which actors freeze their poses and facial expressions during a climactic moment in the play
 
ezoshiya - publisher's shop (like modern bookstores)
 
ga - "picture" or "picture by"; often used as a suffix in artists' signatures
 
geisha - an accomplished person of the arts; a skilled entertainer
 
hanmoto - publisher who commissioned the print to be made
 
hikko - Ukiyo-e master's assistant
 
hanshita - tracing of a master drawing
 
jidaimono - historical dramas in kabuki theater
 
kabuki - popular theater that developed during the Edo period (1615 - 1868)
 
ken no e - pictures depicting the game of ken
 
kiwame - "approved" censor seal
 
kyogo-zuri - first test copy of the print, which would be presented to the master artist for inspection
 
musha-e - warrior prints
 
nigao-e - "likeness pictures"; portraits that focus on an actor's individual features
 
nishiki-e - "brocade pictures" (term used to describe Ukiyo-e)
 
onnagata - male actors who impersonate female roles on the kabuki stage
 
ukiyo-e - "pictures of the floating world"; a term used to describe paintings and prints that represented the fleeting pleasures of urban life in Edo
 
yakusha-e - actor prints
 
 
 
 
Source:
By Laura J. Mueller