The Cup of Long Life

A work made of color woodblock print; surimono.
CC0 Public Domain Designation

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  • A work made of color woodblock print; surimono.

Date:

spring 1883

Artist:

Shibata Zeshin
Japanese, 1807-1891

About this artwork

This colorful print shows an engraved black-lacquer box and a red-lacquer sake cup with myriad characters. The box is inscribed “long life sake cup,” and the cup is covered with the many different versions of the character for “long life” (kotobuki). There were traditionally 100 variations of this character, emphasizing this number as the ultimate in longevity.
The host of this print was the poet, author, and essayist Kameda Hozan. Many examples of large-scale surimono by Shibata Zeshin exist; he must have set up a large establishment in order to cater to orders from poets and intellectuals. Since Zeshin was engaged in many official commissions in other media and had a large group of apprentices, he probably left most of the details of surimono production to his apprentices.

Currently Off View

Asian Art

Artist

Shibata Zeshin

Title

The Cup of Long Life

Origin

Japan

Date

1883

Medium

Color woodblock print; surimono

Dimensions

57.4 x 43.3 cm (22 5/8 x 17 1/8 in.)

Credit Line

Charles H. Mitchell Collection unrestricted gift

Reference Number

1972.2013

Extended information about this artwork

Object information is a work in progress and may be updated as new research findings emerge. To help improve this record, please email .

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