Noh Dancer as Empress Jingû with a TroutArtist(s)Yamawaki TôkiObject Creation Date1831Medium & SupportHanging scroll, ink and color on silkDimensions
55 9/16 in. x 33 1/4 in. ( 141.1 cm x 84.4 cm )Credit LineMuseum purchase made possible by the Margaret Watson Parker Art Collection FundLabel copy
Noh Dancer as Empress Jing with a Trout
Edo period (1615–1867)
Hanging scroll, ink and color on silk
Museum purchase made possible by the Margaret Watson Parker Art Collection Fund, 1983/1.397
The mythological third-century Empress Jingu- appears frequently in Japanese drama, paintings, and prints. Known as a warrior and a shaman, she was thought to have consulted with the gods to ensure a victorious invasion of Korea. According to legend, when she caught a river trout it was the first sign of divine approval
for her conquest. This painting depicts this fishing scene as it was reenacted in Noh theater, a classical, highly stylized Japanese dance-drama in which adult male performers play the roles of men, women, and youths, changing their appearance with masks. This image highlights the actors’ spectacular costumes. A brocade kimono with a floral scroll design is tucked into a stiffly starched pair of brocade trousers, along with a cloak of green gauze silk with woven gold phoenix designs. The costume is not historically accurate, but instead reflects the stage wear of the era when this image was produced.
Empress Jingû is a figure from Japan’s mythological past. Warrior and shaman, her legend reappears frequently in Japanese drama, paintings, and prints. Before leading her troops on an invasion of the "Land of Treasure" (Korea), she conducted many rites to consult the gods about prospects for victory. The catch of a river trout was the first token of divine approval.
This painting depicts the fishing scene as it was reenacted in the Noh drama, the classical and highly stylized dance-drama of Japan. Male performers play both genders, usually with a mask. Costumes for the Noh stage are among the most spectacular ever made: here the actor wears a brocade kimono with a floral scroll design, tucked into a stiffly starched pair of brocade trousers. His cloak is a green gauze silk with woven gold phoenix designs. The costume has no relation to ancient history, but instead reflects contemporary stage wear.Physical Description
An masked Noh actor dressed as Empress Jingû is holds a catch of a river trout on a pole. The actor wears a brocade kimono with a floral scroll design, tucked into a stiffly starched pair of brocade trousers. His cloak is a green gauze silk with woven gold phoenix designs.Primary Object Classification Painting Primary Object Typehanging scrollCollection AreaAsianRights
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actors (performing artists)
poles (wood products)