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Noh and Kabuki: Auspicious Patterns in Designs for the Noh Theater

"Noh and Kabuki: Auspicious Patterns in Designs for the Noh Theater"

Japanese Gallery (Honkan) Room 9  January 2, 2019 (Wed) - February 24, 2019 (Sun)

  
Karaori Garment (Noh costume), Stylized wave, floral bouquet, fan and bottle gourd flower design on green, red and brown checkered ground, Edo period, 18th century

Noh theater, one of Japan's traditional performing arts, was presented at Shinto shrines and Buddhist temples as an offering to the gods. In return, people hoped to be blessed with rich harvests, numerous descendants, as well as long and healthy lives. For this reason, props and costumes for Noh were often decorated with auspicious patterns–some Chinese in origin and others uniquely Japanese–that reflected these wishes. We invite visitors to take a closer look at these brilliant patterns that embody the hope for good fortune.

Current exhibit includes:
Hitatare (Noh costume), Design of cranes, tortoises, pines, and bamboos on a light-blue ramie ground, Azuchi-Momoyama period, 16th century (Important Cultural Property, Lent by Kasuga jinja, Gifu)
Karaori (Noh costume), Design of seigaiha stylized waves, bouquets, fans, and bottle gourds on a green, red, and brown checkered ground, Passed down by the Uesugi clan, Edo period, 18th century

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