juka bijin 樹下美人
KEY WORD : art history / paintings
Ch; shuxiameiren. A painting theme of a beautiful woman under a tree. The subject found throughout Asia may have originated in Iranian art. Early representations can be seen in Indian sculpture of the female quasi-deity Yaksi. In the Indian context the theme clearly is of fertility. Images of beautiful court ladies standing beneath trees are found in many Tang dynasty tombs and on painted scrolls from Astana, Turfan (now in the Tokyo National Museum and the MOA Museum in Shizuoka prefecture). The six-panel screen decorated with bird feathers of Standing Ladies Torige ryuujo byoubu 鳥毛立女屏風 (8c) in the *Shousouin 正倉院, Nara, shows the metropolitan Chinese style as transported to Japan. Although not directly related to the earlier tradition, *ukiyo-e 浮世絵 paintings and prints often feature beautiful courtesans posing beneath trees, usually the blossoming cherry.


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