16 views of Meoto Iwa

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Dawn at Futamigaura (c. 1832) by Kunisada.

Meoto Iwa, or the Married Couple Rocks, are two rocky stacks in the sea off Futami, Mie, Japan. They are joined by a shimenawa (a heavy rope of rice straw) and are considered sacred by worshippers at the neighboring Futami Okitama Shrine (Futami Okitama Jinja). According to Shinto, the rocks represent the union of the creator of kami, Izanagi and Izanami. The rocks, therefore, celebrate the union in marriage of man and woman. The rope, which weighs 40 kilograms, must be replaced several times a year in a special ceremony. The larger rock, said to be male, has a small torii at its peak.

At dawn during the summer, the sun appears to rise between the two rocks. Mount Fuji is visible in the distance. At low tide, the rocks are not separated by water. (more)

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A Company of Pilgrims from Yedo Outside a Tea House on the Hills Behind the Beach of Futami Admiring the View (c. 1795) by Katsukawa Shunzan.

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Women Worshiping the Rising Sun between the Twin Rocks at Ise (c. 1803–04) by Kitagawa Utamaro.

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Futamigaura (c. 1825) by Shotei Hokuji.

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View of Futamigaura from Famous Places in Ise (1847–52) by Hiroshige.

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Weekend links 529

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Naruto Whirlpool, Awa Province, from the series Views of Famous Places in the Sixty-Odd Provinces (c. 1853) by Hiroshige.

• Eric Margolis: “Yukio Mishima may have gone out in an inglorious blaze in 1970, but three of his previously untranslated works have been released in the English-speaking world in the last two years, with another on the way.” The forthcoming novel is Mishima’s only venture into science fiction (!), A Beautiful Star. The book was filmed by Daihachi Yoshida in 2017.

• “[Ace in the Hole] did well in Europe but not here, perhaps because Americans expected a cocktail and felt I was giving them a shot of vinegar instead.” Billy Wilder discussing his career with Charles Higham in 1967.

• Mixes of the week: All these things invisible by The Ephemeral Man, and Secret Thirteen Mix 306 by Yogev Freilichman.

“So I got a phone number for Vangelis, he was living in Paris and I went there and called him up. He said (affects a gruff Greek accent) ‘Hello’, I said, ‘My name’s Jon Anderson’. He said ‘What?’ I said, ‘I’m in a band called Yes’, he said, ‘Are you a singer? Well, come over’, so I went over. There was this big guy with a long kaftan on and a bow and arrow around his shoulder. I got into his palatial apartment near the Champs-Élysées and there’s quite a long hallway down to his living room, and there’s a little old man there sitting by the TV. Vangelis takes out his bow and sends this arrow down the hallway and it goes right through the window, because the window was open. I said, ‘Vangelis, you could have killed somebody’, he said, ‘Oh, don’t worry, I’m Greek’. I said, ‘I know you’re Greek, but come on’.”

Jon Anderson talking to Duncan Seaman about his first encounters with Vangelis

Tarot cards though the ages; examples from a new book on the subject published by Taschen.

The Suspended Vocation again: Ryan Ruby on Pierre Klossowski, “Brilliant Brother of Balthus”.

• Secret Sound podcast #17 is devoted to The Galaxy of Turiya aka Alice Coltrane.

• At Dennis Cooper’s: Shaye Saint John Day.

Kenneth Anger smiles!

Make Me Smile (Come Up And See Me) (1975) by Steve Harley and Cockney Rebel | Uncertain Smile (1983) by The The | Fleeting Smile (1988) by Roger Eno

Japanese moons

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Autumn Moon At Ishiyama Temple (c. 1834) by Hiroshige.

The moon is a continual feature in Japanese landscape prints, and the following selection is only a small sample of the many beautiful examples that may be found on this print site. See also this site, and Yoshitoshi’s stunning series, One Hundred Aspects of the Moon.

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Rising Moon at Nagase (no date) Artist unknown.

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Rising Moon at Katase River (1907) by Shiron Kasamatsu.

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Nocturnes

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KOBAYASHI, Eijiro–”A High Bridge by Night”

The Night Scenes is a series of 21 woodcut prints by Japanese artists published by Hasegawa/Nishinomiya in the early 1900s. Gorgeous work, and apparently popular enough for the prints to have been reissued many times since. These examples are from a print-selling site with several extensive galleries of 20th-century Japanese prints.

The High Bridge at Night struck me for being remarkably similar to Whistler’s famous painting of Old Battersea Bridge, Nocturne: Blue and Gold (1872–75). Whistler, of course, developed his mature style through looking at Japanese prints, and the Tate’s note for his painting says it may have been derived from a Hiroshige print. The Hiroshige looks nothing like the High Bridge at Night, however; was the latter based on an earlier print which Whistler had seen, or is the High Bridge (which post-dates Whistler’s painting) an example of the Japanese stealing back some of their influence from the West?

(Thanks to Wood s Lot for the prints tip.)

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ARAI, Yoshimune II–”A Ferry Boat”

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KOBAYASHI, Eijiro–”A Pagoda by Moonlight”

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Henri Rivière’s Eiffel Tower

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Des Jardins du Trocadéro l’Automne.

Paris again and a suitably autumnal scene from Thirty-Six Views of the Eiffel Tower (1902) by Henri Rivière (1864–1951). Inspired by the celebrated Thirty-Six Views of Mount Fuji, these do for the City of Light what Hokusai and Hiroshige did for Japan.

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De la rue Beethoven.

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Du Pont d’Austerlitz.

Previously on { feuilleton }
Peter Eudenbach’s Eiffel Ferris wheel
City of Light