Some time ago there was an exhibition at the Japanese embassy dedicated to traditional dolls of Japan. Couldn't miss it because firstly, still have this childish weakness for dolls; second, Japanese dolls are really something special, they were created not as toys for children but like some type of art to admire; and third, those dolls are dressed in traditional clothes which would never fail to arouse my interest. Besides, Japanese culture has always been fascinating to me. At the exhibition I could not only enjoy the beautiful dolls but find out something new from the information written on the stands.
The dolls are made with such accuracy, with such attention to every smallest detail of the costume. Fineness and beauty of the dresses' fabrics, gracefulness and naturalness of the dolls' poses simply amaze you.
All the dolls on the photos above are called Oyama Ningyo. It is a typical Japanese doll dressed in a beautiful costume expressing woman's beauty and graceful figure. Oyama Ningyo is based on the costume of the Edo era and has been produced since that time.
The name of this composition is Rokudan. Rokudan expresses how peacefully a beatiful lady plays Koto, a traditional Japanese string instrument. Koto has long been an accompaniment in Japanese classical music.
This doll's name is Dojoji. It impersonates a dancer who came to Dojoji temple to attend a memorial service for a bell. She was asked by a monk to dance in front of the bell. First she danced solemnly, wearing a coronet and holding a fan. Then she danced gracefully, this time holding a woven hat and beating the hand drum.
And this is Oiran doll. Oirans were high ranking courtesans of Yoshiwara Yukaku (pleasure district). They were entertainers rather than simply "women of pleasure", who were highly trained in the classics, calligraphy, tea ceremony, singing and etc.
Hanayome doll is dressed in a traditional Japanese wedding costume. A Japanese bride ordinarily wears a garment called Uchikake on her kimono and has her hair dressed in a style called Bunkin Takashimada. She also puts a special ornament on her head meaning that a bride can get along with her husband if she doesn't reveal her true self.
And this is Shiokumi, a female diver. She wears a special headgear and a straw-like rain-cape known as Suikan around her waist. Suspended from her shoulders are wooden buckets attached to a bar to scoop up water from the sea.
Yaegaki Hime is a princess and holding in her hands a helmet, her family treasure.
Okaji is a married woman with a lantern. The composition is from a popular Japanese drama.
I really enjoyed the exhibition and couldn't help but sharing with you the photos of these beauties. Hope you enjoyed too.