The Golden Age of Colour Prints: Ukiyo-e from the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

Wakaura and Wakana of the Wakanaya, from the series Courtesans of the Pleasure Quarters in Double Mirrors, Kitagawa Utamaro I. Image courtesy  Museum Fine Arts, Boston
Wakaura and Wakana of the Wakanaya, from the series Courtesans of the Pleasure Quarters in Double Mirrors, Kitagawa Utamaro I. Image courtesy Museum Fine Arts, Boston

The Golden Age of Colour Prints: Ukiyo-e is drawn from the collection of the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, one of the most significant collections of Japanese prints in the world.

Focusing on what is known as the golden age of nishiki-e colour prints, the Tenmei and Kansei eras (1781-1801), The Golden Age of Colour Prints showcases 96 ukiyo-e prints and offers a rare opportunity for visitors to appreciate the gorgeous colour aesthetic that is the essence of nishiki-e, or ukiyo-e printed in multiple colours.

The exhibition focuses on the art of three master printmakers who were key innovators in the medium: Torii Kiyonaga, Kitagawa Utamaro and Toshusai Sharaku. At the time they were produced, the images were considered to be crude and unsophisticated, and for popular consumption. The superficial world of beauty and entertainment, of the pleasure quarter and the theatre were considered to be both remote from everyday life and not appropriate subjects for art. However the art form rose to great popularity in the metropolitan culture of Tokyo during the second half of the 17th century and has had a powerful and enduring influence on Western art.

This exhibition was organised by The Museum of Fine Arts  in Boston, and is proudly presented by Greater Shepparton City Council.  

Takashima Ohisa, from an untitled series of famous beauties of Edo, Kitagawa Utamaro I (Japanese, (?)- 1806), Publisher: Iwatoya Kisaburo (Japanese). Japanese, Edo period, about 179293 (Kansei 45), woodblock print (nishiki-e); ink and color on paper. William Sturgis Bigelow Collection 11.14317. Image 2012  Museum Fine Arts, Boston
Actor Ichikawa Omezo as the Manservant Ippei Toshusai Sharaku (Japanese, active 1794  1795) Publisher: Tsutaya Juzaburo (Koshodo) William Sturgis Bigelow Collection, 11.14672 Photograph  2012 Museum of Fine Arts, Boston
Happy Togetherness for Umegawa and Chubei (Umegawa Chubei no kihan), from the series Eight Pledges at Lovers' Meetings (Omi hakkei) Kitagawa Utamaro I (Japanese, (?)1806) Publisher: Omiya Gonkur (Japanese) Japanese, Edo period, about 179899 (Kansei 1011) Woodblock print (nishiki e); ink and color on paper William Sturgis Bigelow Collection, 11.14212 Image courtesy  Museum Fine Arts, Boston
Masatsuya (Actor Nakamura Nakazo II as Aramaki Mimishiro), from the series Portraits of Actors on Stage (Yakusha butai no sugata e) Utagawa Toyokuni I (Japanese, 17691825) Publisher: Izumiya Ichibei (Kansendo) (Japanese) Japanese, Edo period, 1794 (Kansei 6), 11th month Woodblock print (nishiki e); ink and color on paper Vertical oban; 35 x 23.7 cm (13 3/4 x 9 5/16 in.) William Sturgis Bigelow Collection, 11.13733 Image courtesy  Museum Fine Arts, Boston
The Third Month, from the series Twelve Months in the South (Minami jni k) Torii Kiyonaga (Japanese, 17521815) Japanese, Edo period, about 1784 (Tenmei 4) Woodblock print (nishiki e); ink and color on paper Vertical ban; 38.6 x 25.8 cm (15 3/16 x 10 3/16 in.) William Sturgis Bigelow Collection
The Chofu Jewel River (Chofu no Tamagawa) Utagawa Toyokuni I (Japanese, 17691825) Publisher: Izumiya Ichibei (Kansendo) (Japanese) Japanese, Edo period, about 17951801 (late Kansei era) Woodblock print (nishiki e); ink and color on paper William Sturgis Bigelow Collection 11.24991 Image 2012  Museum Fine Arts, Boston
Actor Segawa Kikunojo III Performing the Lion Dance (Shakkyo) Torii Kiyonaga (Japanese, 17521815) Publisher: Nishimuraya Yohachi (Eijudo) (Japanese) Japanese, Edo period, 1789 (Kansei 1), 3rd month Woodblock print (nishiki e); ink and color on paper William Sturgis Bigelow Collection 11.13916 Image courtesy  Museum Fine Arts, Boston
A Battledore (Hagoita) with a Portrait of Actor Segawa Kikunojo III Katsukawa Shunsho (Japanese, 17261792) Japanese, Edo period Woodblock print (nishiki e); ink and color on paper William Sturgis Bigelow Collection 11.14857 Image courtesy  Museum Fine Arts, Boston
A Spring Outing Kitagawa Utamaro I (Japanese, (?)- 1806) Publisher: Tsutaya Juzaburo (Koshodo) (Japanese) Japanese, Edo period, about 178788 (Tenmei 78) Woodblock print (nishiki e); ink and color on paper William Sturgis Bigelow Collection 11.14402 Image courtesy  Museum Fine Arts, Boston
Ladies Practicing Martial Arts (Opening Scene of the Play Mirror Mountain) Utagawa Toyokuni I (Japanese, 17691825) Publisher: Wakasaya Yoichi (Jakurindo) (Japanese) Japanese, Edo period Woodblock print (nishiki e); ink and color on paper William Sturgis Bigelow Collection, 11.13756 Image courtesy  Museum Fine Arts, Boston

Buy Tickets

Pleasures of the Four Seasons: Colors and Scents of Flowers, right, left, Kitagawa Utamaro I
Pleasures of the Four Seasons: Colors and Scents of Flowers, right, left, Kitagawa Utamaro I

Cost
Adults $12
Concession and Friends of SAM $8
Family (2 adults + 2 children) $28
Secondary and primary school group bookings $6 per student
Children under 5 years free (however will still require a ticket)
Greater Shepparton residents may visit free on Tuesdays throughout the exhibition

Bookings
To purchase tickets and for more information on group bookings, please visit the Riverlinks Box Office at the Eastbank Centre or phone (03) 5832 9511. Tickets can also be purchased online at www.riverlinksvenues.com.au, or by clicking the link below.

BUY TICKETS

Programs and Events

Programs and Events

Experienced art educators and artists will take you on a journey of self-discovery and hands-on enjoyment of art in SAM's public program, which includes an array of special workshops inspired by The Golden Age of Colour Prints.  

View SAM's Programs and Events

Education & Tours

Education & Tours

Education services at SAM include a range of guided talks for VCE, VELS and AusVELS coursework as well as post compulsory education and early childhood sectors. Group visits and tours must be pre-booked. There is no entry charge into the Art Museum, except for The Golden Age of Colour Prints exhibition, with which guided tours are included in the entry fee. In addition, a free education resource kit for this exhibition will be available from this space before the exhibition opens. Free SAM Art Passports are also available for all school bookings.

Professional Development for Teachers
In support of The Golden Age of Colour Prints exhibition and other curated exhibitions exclusive to Shepparton Art Museum, teachers from all sectors are invited to join us for education previews, curatorial and artist presentations and workshops throughout semester. Where relevant, education resources can be provided to further assist teachers with planning pre-visit, self-guided and post-visit activities. All professional development activities including SAM Out Late! will now be registered with the Victorian Institute of Teaching. Teachers from primary and secondary schools are able fulfil registration requirements by applying directly through PDi, the professional development search engine for Victorian teachers: www.pdi.vic.edu.au.

Learning for Students
SAM encourages secondary students to take the opportunity to participate in it's education events. This year we have programmed our first student seminar to support studies in VCE Art, Studio Arts and new coursework in Visual Communication and Design. Our exhibition and workshop programs are complemented by monthly, evening floor talks. These talks are free and open to the public (after you've purchased your ticket to The Golden Age of Colour Prints exhibition.

View SAM's Education Programs

About The Golden Age

About The Golden Age

The Golden Age of Colour Prints: Ukiyo-e from the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, exclusively presented at Shepparton Art Museum features the art of three of the most important Ukiyo-e artists Torii Kiyonga, Kitagawa Utamaro and Toshusai Sharaku, along with a selection of artworks by their contemporaries. Each of these three artists were master print makers and key innovators in the medium of Ukiyo-e print.

This exhibition has toured four venues in Japan and is being presented exclusively at SAM in Australia, after which time the works will return to Boston. This is the first major exhibition of Japanese prints held in Australia in three years and one of the largest ever held.

Read more about The Golden Age

Masters of The Golden Age

Torii Kiyonaga (1752 - 1815)

Kitagawa Utamaro (1753 - 1806)

Toshusai Sharaku (1794 - 1801)

Getting to SAM

SAM is located 180km north east of Melbourne. Estimated travel time is approximately 2hrs 30mins by car or train.

http://www.sheppartonartmuseum.com.au/yourvisit/  

http://www.vline.com.au/home/ 

SAM, 70 Welsford St Shepparton, Victoria 3630

Accommodation

Visiting Shepparton overnight? Book your accommodation online with Greater Shepparton Visitor Information Centre: http://www.discovershepparton.com.au/

SAM Shop and The Golden Age

SAM Shop and The Golden Age

The SAM Shop is a fantastic place to purchase artist-made ceramics and gifts inspired by Japanese art and culture, along with a range of Golden Age merchandise.    

An exhibition catalogue will also be available from the SAM Shop for $22, which includes all of the prints on display in The Golden Age of Colour Prints: Ukiyo-e from the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston 

Check out the SAM shop

Eastbank Caf

Eastbank Caf

The Eastbank Caf is the perfect place to stop for a bite to eat. It serves a wide variety of sandwiches and focaccias, gourmet meals, cakes and slices, and the best coffee in Shepparton.

The Eastbank Caf is open seven days, 8.30am to 4.30pm Monday to Friday and 10am to 4pm Saturday and Sunday.

Media Enquiries

For any media enquiries regarding this exhibition, please contact Miranda Brown Publicity on (03) 9419 0931 or email info@mbpublicity.com.au.

FAQs

Q. Can I use a pram, stroller or wheelchair in the gallery spaces? Yes. A lift is also provided on the ground floor to reach the upstairs galleries, toilets and workshop.

Q. What facilities do you have for people with babies? A baby changing facility is available next door in the Eastbank Centre, wheelchair accessible toilet.

Q. Does SAM have cloaking facilities? Items larger than 30 cm x 30 cm are to be left with our Front Desk. Secure storage space is limited. For schoolbags, unsecured storage space is available in our cloakroom.

Q. Can I touch the artworks including ceramics on exhibition in the galleries at SAM? Touching artworks is not permitted, however tempting.

Q. Can I take photographs, film or video the artworks on display using a camera, video recorder, iPhone or smartphone in The Golden Age of Colour Prints exhibition? In this exhibition, due to copyright and conservation reasons, members of the public are not permitted to film, video record or photograph the artworks using any recording devices. Images of artworks are available on products including the exhibition catalogue for sale in our Museum Shop.

Q. Can I take notes on, sketch or paint images of the artworks in The Golden Age of Colour Prints exhibition? Sketching and note taking is permitted using dry pencil on paper only. The dimensions of the paper are to be no larger than an A4' size (29.7 x 21 cm / 11.7 x 8.3 inches). The use of medium such as ink, including ballpoint ink, paint, chalk, charcoal, and crayon is not permitted in the exhibition spaces.

Q. Can I eat, drink or smoke inside SAM? Eating, drinking and smoking are not permitted inside SAM, in particular in the exhibition spaces. Why not grab a bite to eat next door at the Eastbank Caf? SAM is also situated opposite the Queens Gardens - a lovely place for a picnic. Refer to the Your Visit page for further details.

Q. Do I need to book my group in to visit SAM and The Golden Age of Colour Prints exhibition? To help you make the most of your experience, all group bookings are to be made in advance using our Group Booking Form.

Q. What public programmes and education resources do you have available? SAM has lots of exciting things happening during the exhibition and all year round! This includes special previews, workshops and talks. Resources such as education kits for exhibitions are available. For more information see our Education pages.

Q. Can Shepparton Art Museum staff tell me if my artworks are authentic and how much they are worth? SAM staff are not qualified to authenticate artworks and objects or provide valuations of such items. We recommend that you contact an Australian Government approved valuer who will make an assessment for a fee. A list of approved valuers can be downloaded from the Australian Government website: http://arts.gov.au/sites/default/files/funding/tax/cgp/cgp-approved-valuers.pdf. This list is periodically updated by the Commonwealth Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts.

Q. Is there an exhibition catalogue available for The Golden Age of Colour Prints? Yes, an exhibition catalogue will be available when the exhibition opens on 7 March 2013. You can also make a credit card purchase by calling (03) 5832 9860, and the SAM Shop staff will organise your catalogue/shop stock to be posted to you. Postage costs will apply.

Partners and Sponsors

Greater Shepparton City Council
Museum of Fine Arts, Boston
Arts Victoria
Tourism Victoria

We'd love to have your feedback!

To help us plan for future exhibitions and events at SAM, please take a few minutes to complete a survey:

Take a survey about The Golden Age of Colour Prints and your visit to SAM after you've visited the exhibition.