Tag Archives: noren

Entrance

“Entrance”
Coloured pencil drawing of Katsutomo. 370 x 460 mm. June 2017

“Entrance 1. the act or an instance of going or coming in; a door, passage etc. by which one enters; right of admission; the coming of an actor on stage.”                                        “Entrance 2. enchant, delight; put into a trance; overwhelm with strong feeling.”           (The Australian Concise Oxford Dictionary)

In September 2015 I took many photos of Katsutomo during her erikae (when she become a Geiko).  This month, June 2017, I have made my third drawing from this auspicious occasion.

Two previous drawings of Katsutomo …

A Reflective Moment
330 x 490 mm, 2015

Being There
365 x 510 mm, 2015

and when she was still a Maiko…

Here she is in my drawing “The Art of Elegance”, 2014

I have recently been invited to exhibit my drawings at Kidogo Arthouse – 7th to 20th September 2017 – hence a return to memories – and new drawings – of Kyoto.  My co-exhibitor will be Ceramicist, Stewart Scambler.  This is a Gallery East exhibition.

 

Enfolded

Enfolded Coloured pencil drawing, 335 x 400 mm. July 2014.

Enfolded
Coloured pencil drawing, 335 x 400 mm. July 2014.

The geiko, swathed in fine cloth, passes beneath coarse fabric panels.  She is about to disappear behind the noren curtain into Ichiriki, Kyoto’s most famous teahouse (though it has little to do with tea).

An international and insatiable public is gathered outside Ichiriki to see maiko and geiko.  After a long empty wait, all of a sudden a harried geiko walks into the fray.  The ungracious crowd exclaims and surges forward.  Grim expression on her face, she casts her eyes down, mentally blocking out cameras flashing furiously upon her person.   People jostle as they vie with one another to capture this unique Japanese curiosity.  She hastens forward.   The noren curtain enfolds her, pulling her into the inner sanctum.

A great divide can be as solid as the Rocky Mountains or the Southern Alps.  Or it can be as insubstantial and fluid as panels of fabric wafting in the breeze.  Through this floating fabric nobody uninvited may pass.  Keep Out.  Inside the courtyard oasis she lifts her eyes, breathes out and gathers herself into the charming witty hostess she has come here to be.

An unusual way of saying KEEP OUT seen outside another of the Gion establishments. I liked it so much that I photographed it, printed it and put it on my bedroom door.

An unusual way of saying KEEP OUT –  seen outside another  Gion establishment. I liked it so much that I photographed it, printed it and stuck it to the outside of my bedroom door.

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