Art/ Collection/ Art Object

Outfit for the Game of Incense

Artist:
Ryūryūkyo Shinsai (Japanese, active ca. 1799–1823)
Period:
Edo period (1615–1868)
Date:
19th century
Culture:
Japan
Medium:
Polychrome woodblock print (surimono); ink and color on paper
Dimensions:
4 7/8 x 10 3/4 in. (12.4 x 27.3 cm)
Classification:
Prints
Credit Line:
H. O. Havemeyer Collection, Bequest of Mrs. H. O. Havemeyer, 1929
Accession Number:
JP2065
Not on view
This privately commissioned, limited-edition New Year's greeting print (surimono) depicts various utensils of the incense game. It features a decorative mica stand, which held the small, silver-framed mica plates under the chopped incense wood pieces as they were heated in the incense heater. The poem refers to several spring symbols using word play, as is customary in New Year's greetings. Also mentioned is the first incense game of the year (hatsuneko), an incense game that celebrates the advent of spring.
Signature: Ryuyukio Shinsai ga; seal: Ryu
Tadamasa Hayashi ; Mrs. H. O. (Louisine W.) Havemeyer , New York (until d. 1929; bequeathed to MMA).
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