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November 1998

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Subject:
From:
Steve Cavrak <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
UVM Japan Program News and Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>
Date:
Mon, 9 Nov 1998 08:57:44 -0500
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TEXT/PLAIN
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[ From the NY Times, AOL On-line Edition ]

  Treasures from Ancient Edo in Washington

  Japan, 1615-1868: For the first time in centuries, the
country was united under the Tokugawa shoguns, who
governed during a period of unprecedented peace and
prosperity from their new capital, Edo, which grew into
the world's largest city in the 18th century and is now
Tokyo.

  Art flourished, too. Now nearly 300 painted scrolls,
screens, costumes, ceremonial armor, sculpture,
ceramics, lacquerware and woodblock prints from this
rich period, drawn from 75 public and private Japanese
collections, will be on view from Sunday to Feb. 15 at
the National Gallery of Art in Washington. "Edo: Art in
Japan 1615-1868" is the first comprehensive survey in
the United States of Edo period art. Many pieces are
National Treasures that have never before left Japan.
Some are sensitive to light, and will be rotated,
between Jan. 6 and 12.

  To establish the tone of high style and buoyant
spirits characteristic of Edo art, the exhibition will
open with a display of gold lacquerware, embroidered and
painted kimonos and a section of colorful gold-leaf
screens that define the period's esthetics. One screen,
Sakai Hoitsu's "Spring and Autumn Maples," has never
before been exhibited, even in Japan. Next come samurai
rooms, showing the peaceful arts created for the warrior
class; a work section, with images of urban and rural
occupations; a religion area, with works illustrating
Buddhist and Shinto beliefs; a travel and landscape
area, focusing on paintings of beautiful sites, and
entertainment galleries, with works depicting
fashionable actors, sumo wrestlers and geisha as well as
bold costumes.

  To complete the picture of daily life during the Edo
period, the National Gallery has scheduled a free
performing-arts festival in and around the museum
throughout November. Festival dancers will perform a
lion dance, firemen-acrobats will present a traditional
fire-safety ceremony, and actors will explain Kabuki and
other traditional performing arts.

  The National Gallery, Fourth Street and Constitution
Avenue, N.W., is open daily. Admission is free, but
passes for the exhibition will be required on weekends,
holidays, the Friday after Thanksgiving and the week
following Christmas.

  Advance passes can be obtained at the National Gallery
(no fee) or at Ticketmaster locations ($2 per pass).
Passes may be obtained from Ticketmaster, (800)
551-7328, outside the Washington area, for $2.75 per
pass and $1.25 per order.

  A limited number of same-day passes will be available
at the Gallery's East Building on a first-come,
first-served basis; (202) 737-4215 or http://www.nga.gov.

    -- JUDITH H. DOBRZYNSKI

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