The Costume Museum Kyoto Japan Costume History in Japan
The Edo Period  
146 - Fuji-musume or Wisteria maiden of Ohtsue which are the folk-paintings by unknown artisans.
The Costume Museum Kyoto JapanThe Costume Museum Kyoto Japan
The Costume Museum Kyoto Japan
1 Nuri-gasa
2 Fujinohana-no-birabira-kanzashi
3 Fujinohana-no-eda-no-mochimono
4 Obi
5 Furisode
6 Koshi-obi
7 Furisode-no-suso
8 Shitagi-no-sode
9 Shitagi-no-suso
The Otsue (=painting of Otsu) caricature were public-pictures drawn by the unknown painters in the Edo era; they were inexpensive for the common people to buy. Since they were sold somewhere around the town of Oiwake on Tokaido highway which was located between Kyoto and Otsu, it was named the Otsue caricature. This is the famous haiku poem by Basho, a haiku master : " What Buddha it is the start of the brush of an Otsue caricature." The "style" of the first Otsue caricature was already made in Kanbun period [1661 - 1672] in the first half of Edo era. Then, Mamanaki-no-matabei (=stutterer Matabei) was called the founder of Otsue by the scenario titled "Keisei-hankonkoh" which Chikamatsu Monzaemon wrote in the 2nd year of Hoei period [1705]; there is no historical basis in it in any way. . The Otsue caricature started from the Buddhistic drawing at first. First, from a moral meaning of Buddhism, then, afterwards, as a cartoon, the following paintings were drawn: "the Buddhist invocation of a demon", "Hyotan-namazu", "Gehoh-hashigo-sori", "Thunder and a drum", "Tsurigane Benkei," "Yanone Goro," "a hawker," "Yarimochi-yakko," and "Wisteria maiden." It was inherited till the last stage of the Edo era; It stopped its active history in the first year of Meiji era. The Otsue caricature was also taken in by Japanese dance. The "Fujimusume", shown in the photo, is one of the typical things. The figure is covered with a black-lacquered bamboo hat. It is the style of long-sleeved kimono with the branch of "fuji (=wisteria)". It is expressing the customs of ladies of the town in the middle of the Edo era.