VIRTUAL COLLECTION OF ASIAN MASTERPIECES

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A Woman Washing Her Hands under a Stream of Water
MNK VI-3134
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Why this is a
Masterpiece

The valuable deluxe prints called surimono were made on request for special occasions. This particular print represents not only the magnificent drawings of lines but it is especially beautiful because it is enriched with so-called blind printing, silver and gold embossing. The woman portrayed by the artist belongs to the elite companions. Leaving the party for a moment, she has come out onto the veranda to wash her hands. To suggest a stream of running water, the artist employed the kara-zuri, or so-called blind embossing technique, which consists in the textural impressing of forms without ink.

History of the Object
Although in Feliks Jasieński’s collection of books, which is presently in the custody of the Cracow Museum, there are numerous auction catalogues, among which are catalogues of the Barboutau, Bing, Burty, Gillot and Hayashi collections, it is impossible to associate them with specific works of the Jasieński collection on the basis of short descriptions of individual items.

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Type
Print 
Materials
Colour woodblock print on paper, surimono, nishiki-e, tsuya-zuri, kara-zuri, gold and silver embossing 
Measurements
shikishiban-size 
Creator name
Totoya Hokkei 
Creator date
1780-1850 
Where it was made
Japan 
Geography
Japan 
Time period
AD 19th century ~ AD 19th century 
Creation date
19th century; first quarter 
Function
artwork 
Acquisition
Donated by Feliks Jasieński (1861-1929) in 1920. Feliks Jasieński was a Polish collector, connoisseur, critic and music lover, and outstanding personality. His interest in art and music, as well as his personal intellectual and social qualities, brought him close to the artistic elite of Paris, the capital of art. Feliks Jasieński donated about 15,000 art objects from the Far and Middle East, Poland, and other European countries to the National Museum in Cracow. Japanese art was represented by approximately 6,500 items, including paintings, sculptures, fabrics, kimonos, obi sashes, lacquerware, ceramics, enamelware, bronzes, dyeing stencils, decorative art objects, arms and armours. The widest range of 5,000 objects was provided by the most valuable and consistent group of Ukiyo-e woodblock prints which were Jasienski’s first and probably strongest fascination. 
Copyright
The National Museum in Cracow 
Acknowledgements
Beata Romanowicz, Head Curator of the Far Eastern Art Department, The National Museum in Cracow and Zofia Maria Alber (1924-1999), Former Head Curator of the Far Eastern Art Department, The National Museum in Cracow 
Owner
The National Museum in Cracow 
Museum
The National Museum in Cracow 
Credit line
 
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