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Picture of a Visit by the Empress to the General Staff Headquarters

 

Japanese Color Woodblock Print

Picture of a Visit by the Empress

to the General Staff Headquarters

by Kobayashi Kiyochika, 1895


IHL Cat. #443

About This Print

Source: The World of the Meiji Print: Impressions of a New Civilization, Julia Meech-Pekarik, Weatherhill, 1986, p. 209-211.
The empress presents a general with a tray of rolled bandages.  "As president of the Lady's Volunteer Nursing Association, the empress was eager to alleviate the sufferings of the wounded and set to work with the palace ladies to make antiseptic bandages: six thousand were sent from the imperial household to the Red Cross Society on October 13, 1894.  The imperial figure was a model for the earnest ladies of the upper classes who met almost daily from eight in the morning until half-past five in the afternoon in the rooms of the Tokyo Red Cross Hospital."

Fashion and the War

"...when the empress and her entourage - so fashion-conscious in the late 1880s - reappear during the Sino-Japanese War, their costumes are conventionalized, worn almost as if they were uniforms.  The attendants...wear exactly the same dress, and moreover, they are hopelessly out-of-date.  The silent, motionless arrangement of the figures is altogether consistent with the classic quality of their clothing.  For all their initial enthusiasm, by the end of the 1880s the Japanese had drawn to a halt in relation to the constantly changing world of Western fashion.  In the West the bustle and draped overskirt disappeared from day dresses in the first years of the new decade; a plain, untrimmed, flowing skirt and a bodice with voluminous sleeves puffed out around the upper arms comprised the new look of the 1890s."

Print Details
 IHL Catalog
 #443
 Title or Description  Picture of a Visit by the Empress to the General Staff Headquarters
 参謀本部行啓之図 Sanbō honbu gyōkei no zu
 Series  
 Artist  Kiyochika Kobayashi (1847-1915)
 Signature
Kiyochika
 Seal  kiyo and chika (see image above)
 Publication Date  1895 (Meiji 28)
 Publisher  
Takekawa Seikichi 武川清吉(Sawamuraya Seikichi 沢村屋清吉) [Marks: pub. ref. 459; seal not shown)

(click on image left to enlarge)
 Edition  first edition
 Impression  excellent
 Colors  good
 Condition fair - light wrinkling throughout, three sheets joined, soiling, frayed margins, missing portion of margin upper right corner, not backed, full size
 Genre  ukiyo-e - senso-e (Sino-Japanese War)
 Miscellaneous
 Format  vertical oban triptych
 H x W Paper
 14 5/8 x 28 1/2 in. (37.1 x 72.4 cm)
 Literature The World of the Meiji Print: Impressions of a New Civilization, Julia Meech-Pekarik, Weatherhill, 1986, p. 210.
 Collections This Print
The Metropolitan Museum of Art JP3266; Museum of Fine Arts, Boston 2000.380.27a-c; Five Colleges and Historic Deerfield Museum Consortium AC 2000.385.ee.1-3

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