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sanjurokunin kashu "36 Immortal Poets" on the web

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  • Jake Benson
    Hello all, I had found this image on the web at Columbia University s art history database. It is of the oldest datable piece of suminagashi marbling, the
    Message 1 of 1 , Sep 22, 2004
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      Hello all,

      I had found this image on the web at Columbia University's art history
      database. It is of the oldest datable piece of suminagashi marbling,
      the sanjuroku nin kashu, or "36 Immortal poets", dated to 1112 CE,
      Heian period . I wrote the professor who had mounted some descriptions
      about the piece, but never heard back. Oddly enough, when I went back
      to the main page that featured the information, it is now blocked, and
      requires a Columbia ID to get in. Wasn't that nice of them?

      While initially frustrated, I found that if you click on the individual
      image links, you can still view them and get around the block for some
      reason...

      <http://www.mcah.columbia.edu/dbcourses/delbanco/large/
      AH_0304_216_20.jpg>

      When I looked over the entire facsimile (10 volumes), I found only 11
      examples of sumingashi in the entire manuscript. If anyone is up for
      translating modern kanji, I have scanned all of the modern
      transcriptions for each poem and can send them to whomever is
      interested. While this manuscript is well known for marbling, I
      haven't seen one of the waka poems actually translated. i understand
      that this was a compilation of poems by 36 poets, but still do not
      understand the process that created it. It is often said to have been
      "for the emporer" but I don't know if that means it was a commission,
      or a gift. I do think the poets were living contemporaries at the time
      of manufacture, but I could be wrong. Wish we could lure Einen Miura
      to this list to tell us more....

      Another page has a style of waved line decoration that sort of imitates
      sumingashi. Other decorative papers have been carefully turn in
      abstract shapes and joined to form a kind of collage background. This
      was also done using sumingashi to at least one leaf from this
      manuscript. :

      <http://www.mcah.columbia.edu/dbcourses/delbanco/large/
      AH_0304_216_19.jpg>

      this one is interesting, because it looks as though they may have used
      a part of a painting- of a boat? Perhaps thisis an example of
      "recycling" older pieces into new works, similar to what are found in
      Islamic "muraqqa" albums. Again you see cloud or wave bands, perhaps
      reminiscent of suminagashi...?

      <http://www.mcah.columbia.edu/dbcourses/delbanco/large/
      AH_0304_216_21.jpg>

      Best,

      jake









      Benson's Hand Bindery
      Fine Custom Bookbinding, Conservation, & Hand Marbled Papers
      1027 Brookwood Circle
      West Columbia, SC 29169
      (803) 926-5544
      handbindery@...

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