Fascination: Maiko, Geiko, Kyoto – an art exhibition

Robyn Varpins and I will be holding an exhibition of colour pencil drawings and sculpture at EarlyWork Art Gallery (9/330 South Terrace, South Fremantle, AUSTRALIA) from 17 September until 2 October 2016; preview works at the gallery from Monday 12th September.

invitation 3 jpeg

The gallery will be open seven days per week: 10 a.m to 4 p.m.   All work is for sale.

If you click on the title of the drawing (in bold type beneath each image) you will be taken to the original post about it.

Passage 360 x 460 mm

Passage
360 x 460 mm

Passage  At the far end of this narrow passage is a fine restaurant.  A waitress, kimono-wrapped, rushes out of a door and disappears around the corner.  From where I stand, the scene is otherworldly.  SOLD

Amethyst 290 x 395 mm

Amethyst
290 x 395 mm

Amethyst A geiko in a violet kimono elegantly walks by on her way to an ochaya (tea-house).  SOLD

Minamiza Lantern 280 x 330 mm

Minamiza Lantern
280 x 330 mm

Minamiza Lantern  An enormous lantern hangs outside the Minamiza Theatre on Shijo-dori.  At night when lit, its radiant bobbing form commands centre stage.

A Reflective Moment 330 x 490 mm

A Reflective Moment
330 x 490 mm

A Reflective Moment Katsutomo adopts a thoughtful pose on the day of her erikae – (the day she becomes a geiko).  SOLD

Interplay 280 x 330 mm

Interplay
280 x 330 mm

Interplay  A lantern glows in Gion.  The title refers to the interplay of colours, lights and shadows within the composition.  SOLD

A New Day in Gion 300 x 450 mm

A New Day in Gion
300 x 450 mm

A New Day in Gion  A study of lanterns on a bright morning.  The ‘no entry’ sign, illuminated by sunlight, does its best to compete with the intense reds of its lantern neighbours.  SOLD

Encounter 340 x 400 mm

Encounter
340 x 400 mm

Encounter  Geiko and corgi regard one another as they pass on a fine spring morning in Pontocho.  SOLD

Diamonds 410 x 410 mm

Diamonds
410 x 410 mm

Diamonds  Literally, there are diamond patterns in the paving stones.  Figuratively, the title refers to the jewel-like rarity of maiko.  Their grace, elegance and fabulous outfits light up any space, even a city street.  The three maiko are Satsuki, Katsutomo and Mameroku.  SOLD

Being There 365 x 510 mm

Being There
365 x 510 mm

Being There  Katsutomo on the second day of her erikae.  She poses with her red parasol to the delight of her audience.

Bliss 410 x 510 mm

Bliss
410 x 510 mm

Bliss  A bride is given an encouraging smile by a young mother pushing her toddler in a stroller.  The bride wears an iro-uchikake which is a splendidly expensive coat-like garment covering her white bridal kimono.  SOLD

Winter Light 320 x 475 mm

Winter Light
320 x 475 mm

Winter Light  Lanterns bob on Hanamikoji-dori on a cold and drizzly February day.  Winter has its own subtle beauty.

Private Thoughts 385 x 545 mm

Private Thoughts
385 x 545 mm

Private Thoughts  When a maiko or geiko walks in public, she is stared at and photographed by onlookers.  She casts her eyes down, mentally blocking out everyone.  We cannot penetrate her private thoughts.

Costume Drama 280 x 335 mm

Costume Drama
280 x 335 mm

Costume Drama  Teenage Kiyono on the day of her misedashi (debut).   It is her first day as a maiko.  The season is spring so sakura (cherry blossom) is abundant.  SOLD

Paper and Neon 259 x 265 mm

Paper and Neon
259 x 265 mm

Paper and Neon  A paper lantern and neon signs coexist harmoniously within Pontocho’s narrow corridor.

Transition 217 x 425 mm

Transition
217 x 425 mm

Transition  Pontocho as the light fades and the colours change.  The transitional light of dusk is magical, especially when lanterns and neon combine to dazzle our eyes.  SOLD

Coiffed 280 x 280 mm

Coiffed
280 x 280 mm

Coiffed  Satsuki wears her hair in sakkou style which means she is nearly ready to become a geiko.  (Sakkou is the most senior maiko hairstyle, worn for just two weeks before an erikae.)  SOLD.

Jewel 280 x 280 mm

Jewel
280 x 280 mm

Jewel  Satsuki waits to cross Shijo-dori at night.  Her hair is dressed in the fabulous sakkou style.  This style is worn for just two weeks before her erikae.  SOLD

Love Story 200 x 230 mm 2015

Love Story
200 x 230 mm

Love Story  Couples stroll together in Pontocho on a spring evening as lights and lanterns come to life.  SOLD

Oh! You Pretty Things 380 x 565 mm

Oh! You Pretty Things
380 x 565 mm

Oh! You Pretty Things  Satsuki pauses to admire a sheltie dog whose attire, like hers, attracts attention.  Here is an example of “only in Kyoto”.  SOLD

"Fantastic Voyage" Coloured pencils on Arches Aquarelle smooth. 360 x 425 mm. April 2016

“Fantastic Voyage”
360 x 425 mm.

Fantastic Voyage  An artistic journey.  It is the misedashi (debut) of a Pontocho maiko.  She begins her maiden voyage as a performing artist.  SOLD

"Ephemeron" 170 x 260 mm

“Ephemeron”
170 x 260 mm

Ephemeron  ‘Short-lived’.  A girl is a maiko from 16 to 20 years, such a brief time.  SOLD.

"Ephemera" 170 x 260 mm

“Ephemera”
170 x 260 mm

Ephemera  ‘Short-lived’.  Katsuyuki and  Mameyuri, seen here in 2007, have since that time quit their traditional roles and re-entered modern life.  SOLD

"Speed of Life" 285 x 415 mm

“Speed of Life”
285 x 415 mm

Speed of Life  Satsuki, radiant with happiness, flies across the Shijo-dori pedestrian crossing to attend her next ozashiki.  It is the night of her erikae.  She is now a geiko!

Hurry Up! 250 x 305 mm

Hurry Up!
250 x 305 mm

Hurry Up!  On a rainy summer night in Gion there is a flurry of activity as maiko and geiko rush from one ozashiki to another.  There is never time to dawdle between engagements.  Customers are waiting.  SOLD

Doll of Paradise 28.7 x 38 cm

Doll of Paradise
287 x 380 mm

Doll of Paradise  An exquisite and expensive Japanese doll on display in a shop window. Is the doll an imitation of a maiko?  Perhaps maiko are actually imitations of dolls.  Which came first?  SOLD

Super Deluxe 24 x 27 cm

Super Deluxe
240 x 270 mm

Super Deluxe  Word association:  the words on the taxi perfectly describe maiko and geiko.  These female practitioners of traditional Japanese arts are cultivated and refined beings.  They are super deluxe.

Step by Step limited edition of 25 archival prints

Step by Step
limited edition of 25 archival prints

Step by Step  (Limited edition of 25 archival prints)  In Miyagawa-cho two women approach one another.  One is young and supple, the other elderly and bent.  Together they are a metaphor for the passage of time.

Email: juliepodstolski@bigpond.com or call +61 (0) 407 441 272