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For immediate release: May 29, 2002

Contact: Ruta Smithson (609) 258-3763, rutas@Princeton.EDU



Suzuki Harunobu, Japanese, Edo period,1725-1770, "The Køya Jewel River (Køya no Tamagawa)," ca. 1765, ChËban format woodblock print, ink and color on paper, 27.7 x 20.5 cm. Gift of Anne van Biema (1996-206)

Japanese woodblock prints on view at Princeton University Art Museum

Exhibition Dates: May 10 through September 1, 2002

PRINCETON -- A small but remarkable group of Japanese woodblock prints, selected from gifts of Anne van Biema, are on view through September 1, 2002, at the Princeton University Art Museum.

The 16 prints are organized to show the development of woodblock printing techniques, pigments, and styles from the mid-eighteenth to the nineteenth centuries. While the earliest woodblock prints use only black ink, by the mid-eighteenth century color pigments began to be applied to single-sheet prints, known as brocade pictures (nishiki-e). The earliest of these pictures were private calendars printed without authority, first produced by Suzuki Harunobu (1725-1770), whose print "The Køya Jewel River," ca. 1765, is included in the exhibition.

From about the mid-1760s, these color prints were marketed commercially, and depicted classical and contemporary themes, including scenes from literature or the lives of famous personages, beautiful women, travelogues, daily and erotic activities, and actors in various dramatic roles.

Among the nineteenth-century printmakers represented in the exhibition are Utagawa Toyokuni I (1769-1825), Utagawa Kunisada (1786-1865), and Andø Hiroshige (1797-1858).

The museum is open to the public without charge. Free highlights tours of the collection are given every Saturday at 2:00 p.m. The Museum is open Tuesday through Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and on Sunday from 1:00 to 5:00 p.m. It is closed on Monday and major holidays. The Museum Shop closes at 5:00 p.m. The Museum is located in the middle of the Princeton University campus. For further information, please call (609) 258-3788 or visit our new Web site at www.princetonartmuseum.org.

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