Katsukawa Shunsh and Kitao Shigemasa, Seirō bijin awase sugata kagami (‘A Mirror of Beauti-ful Women of the Green Houses Compared’), 1776, polychrome woodblock print, bound book, 28 by 18.5 cm. © Trustees of the British Museum

Manuscript in Print – The Written and the Painted in Early Modern Japanese Publishing Culture

A workshop on the early modern Japanese publishing culture is held from 27th to the 28th of June at the Collaborative Research Centre “Material Text Cultures”, Heidelberg University. The workshop aims to amalgamate insights and approaches to the dynamic processes of handwritten/painted artefacts and the emerging printed production in 17th Century Japan.

Anonymous, Kumano engi emaki (‚Illustrated Legends of the Origins of the Kumano Shrines‘), late 16th- early 17th c., ink and colour on paper, set of three handscrolls, 24.1 cm high, Mary Griggs Burke Collection. © Metropolitan Museum of ArtFront: Katsukawa

The study of Japanese publishing cultures in early-modern urban centres is currently transforming based on two interrelated developments. On the one hand, the investigation of artistic production is diversifying across a spectrum of materialities, genres, and social networks. This new research enables reconsiderations regarding the meaning of the very categories of manuscript and print that have defined discussion on this topic for a long time. On the other hand, such reconsiderations are catalysed by new possibilities of displaying and categorizing artefacts through digital tools. The workshop will bring together specialists from different countries to shed light on these processes.

The event is organized by Prof. Dr. Julie Nelson Davis, visiting professor at the Institute of East Asian Art History, Heidelberg University, as well as Prof. Dr. Melanie Trede and Dr. Radu Leca, both members of SFB „Material Text Cultures“ and the Institute of East Asian Art History. Co-sponsor is the Ishibashi Foundation, Japan.

For detailed information on the program of the workshop please click here (PDF)

For further information please contact:
Radu Leca
Sub-Project B14: Interactive Materialities: Interdependencies between Written/Painted and Printed Artefacts in 17th Century Japan

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