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Fireman’s Jacket (Hikeshi-banten) with Chinese Warrior


Not on view

The interior of this thickly layered, quilted cotton jacket is decorated with the image of Rōrihakucho Chō Jun (Chinese: Zhang Shun), a character revered in nineteenth-century Japan for his courage. Chō Jun, one of the 108 heroes of the Water Margin, a novel translated from Chinese (Shui hu zhuan) into Japanese (Suikoden) during the second half of the Edo period, was the subject of works by celebrated print artists, predominantly Utagawa Kuniyoshi (1798–1861). This composition is based on a print by Kuniyoshi published in 1827–30. The righteous rebel is shown clenching a sword between his teeth as his characteristically pale, muscular, and tattooed body forcefully emerges from a destroyed water gate. He faces down the enemy soldiers who anticipate his arrival and who will slay him in an attack of arrows

Fireman’s Jacket (Hikeshi-banten) with Chinese Warrior, Quilted cotton with tube-drawn paste-resist dyeing (tsutsugaki) with hand-painted details, Japan

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