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A child playing with fish while his mother attempts to shave his head

Suzuki%20Harunobu%2C%20%3Cb%3E%3Ci%3E%20A%20child%20playing%20with%20fish%20while%20his%20mother%20attempts%20to%20shave%20his%20head%3C%2Fi%3E%3C%2Fb%3E%2C%20ca.%201768-1769%2C%20ch%26%23363%3Bban%20nishiki-e%20%28color%20woodblock%20print%29%2C%20The%20Mary%20Andrews%20Ladd%20Collection%2C%20no%20known%20copyright%20restrictions%2C%2032.80
Suzuki Harunobu, A child playing with fish while his mother attempts to shave his head, ca. 1768-1769, chūban nishiki-e (color woodblock print), The Mary Andrews Ladd Collection, no known copyright restrictions, 32.80

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Details
Title

A child playing with fish while his mother attempts to shave his head

Artist

Suzuki Harunobu (Japanese, 1725?-1770)

Date

ca. 1768-1769

Medium

chūban nishiki-e (color woodblock print)

Edition

no other known impressions

Dimensions (H x W x D)

sheet: 10 3/4 in x 8 1/4 in

Inscriptions & Markings

signature/maker's mark: Suzuki Harunobu ga, middle right side

Collection Area

Asian Art; Graphic Arts

Category

Prints

Japanese Traditional Prints

Object Type

relief print

Culture

Japanese

Credit Line

The Mary Andrews Ladd Collection

Accession Number

32.80

Copyright

no known copyright restrictions

Terms

Japanese woodblock prints

nishiki-e

relief printing

relief prints

The Mary Andrews Ladd Collection

Description

Harunobu invites us in to witness a casual moment in the daily life of a young mother and her toddler son. The boy is dressed in an apron-like garment (called a haragake) and naked from the waist down—as was the custom when diapers were not in use. Judging from the razor in her right hand, the mother is trying to shave the child’s head, but he pushes her away, preferring to play with the small fish in a basin. All of the sliding wooden doors have been removed to allow in summer breezes; only the woven bamboo blind (sudare) remains. A cricket cage hanging from the lintel and a blossoming hibiscus further emphasize the season.

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