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: Women Airing Books and Clothes

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one of pair: 2853

Women Airing Books and Clothes

Type
Hanging scroll (mounted on panel)
Maker(s)
Artist: Katsukawa Shunshō 勝川春章 (1726-1792)
Historical period(s)
Edo period, Late 18th century
Medium
Hanging scroll mounted on panel; ink, color, and gold on silk
Dimension(s)
H x W (panel): 193.8 x 105.5 cm (76 5/16 x 41 9/16 in)
Geography
Japan
Credit Line
Gift of Charles Lang Freer
Collection
Freer Gallery of Art
Accession Number
F1905.309
Label
The annual airing of books and clothing to prevent mildew and insects takes place each year in summer. Four women and a young boy lay out paper-covered books removed from protective cabinets. The books are hung over a line to air while one woman becomes distracted from the task by what she finds in an open book. The cuckoo flying overhead is often associated with images of courtesans or with poetry expressing love and longing.

To 1905
Yamanaka & Company, to 1905 [1]

From 1905 to 1919
Charles Lang Freer (1854-1919), purchased from Yamanaka & Company in 1905 [2]

From 1920
Freer Gallery of Art, gift of Charles Lang Freer in 1920 [3]

Notes:

[1] Undated folder sheet note. See Original Panel List, L. 52, pg. 18, Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery Archives. The majority of Charles Lang Freer’s purchases from Yamanaka & Company were made at its New York branch. Yamanaka & Company maintained branch offices, at various times, in Boston, Chicago, London, Peking, Shanghai, Osaka, Nara, and Kyoto. During the summer, the company also maintained seasonal locations in Newport, Bar Harbor, and Atlantic City.

[2] See note 1.

[3] The original deed of Charles Lang Freer's gift was signed in 1906. The collection was received in 1920 upon the completion of the Freer Gallery.

Former owner
Yamanaka and Co. (C.L. Freer source)
Charles Lang Freer (1854-1919)
On View Location
Currently not on view
Classification(s)
Painting
Keyword(s)
child, Edo period (1615 - 1868), Japan, kakemono, ukiyo-e, woman
Collection(s) Area
Japanese Art

Rights Statement
Copyright with museum






We are excited to reopen the Freer in October 2017, following a renovation to allow us to better present our art and serve our visitors. The Sackler remains open, with a full lineup of exhibitions and events both in the museum and around DC. For your safety, all visitors will have their bags checked. See the complete list of restricted items and bag sizes.