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The Japanese Genji Scrolls - Essay Example

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The assignment is to choose a narrative work and discuss the storytelling techniques used by the respective artist for the work. This paper talks about the Japanese Genji Scrolls and explores into details the main techniques used by the artist to effectively communicate the story through the art work as well as the narrative…
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The Japanese Genji Scrolls
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The Japanese Genji Scrolls

Download file to see previous pages... “Tsukuri-e” is a technique in which “dense, flat colors are applied over the undersketch” and then later the outlines are redone with fine black ink (Brodsky 9). The artist uses varied colors and highlights the prominent hues with the fine ink, thus creating an overall magical effect. The highlighted singularities go deep and thrust the intensity of the emotions the characters go through and thus, the ultimate feelings of the characters are exposed and conveyed to the viewers. The artist uses pastel colors to indicate the deep contemplation, longing as well as yearning that the characters are experiencing. This technique thus enables the readers of the Genji tales get more insight into the actual scene of the story with an increased realistic feel and then they can make comparisons with the scenes they had in mind when they read the story. The two main techniques used in the illustrations are the Fukinuki Yatai meaning “blown away roof” and Hikimi Kagibama meaning “line for an eye, hook for a nose” (Brodsky 9) The former relates with the background of the scenes and it depicts the interiors having “neither ceiling nor roof,” which makes the “upper sides of ceiling beams” visible, thus enabling the viewer to see things from a bird’s perspective (Brodsky 9). That is, the viewer of the picture can see the whole scene including the background and every detail it portrays. The latter relates with people and the main characters in the scene, which have been presented “in a very unconventional manner” (Brodsky 9). This technique is used to depict the facial expressions of the characters in which their faces appear to be “mask-like” and devoid of “obvious sexual differentiation”...
This paper stresses that imaginative world that evokes mythical and aesthetic attributes compared to the real world and thus the artist employs this technique to make the characters appear unfamiliar, since the prominent figures in the story are not everyday characters.
This report makes a conclusion that on the other hand, the architecture depicted in the scrolls is very similar to the one in the real world. This helps the viewers to relate to the story, the culture it expresses as well as the values that it depicts. The faces of the central characters are painted in a distant unfamiliar way so as to maintain the perception that the readers already had about these characters. The artist does not want to influence or change those valued perception of the viewers and thus he makes the characters faces identical and mask like, so as to maintain the integrity of the reader’s perspectives. Another feature that can be noticed in the illustrations, such as in the one given below, is that “both” the men and women in the pictures “wear voluminous robes” that “conceals” their sex. This again shows there is no sexual differentiation and it opens a new door of thought. Maybe the artists harbored a feeling of equality among the males and females and that might be a reason as to why there are no obvious implications of sex. Through the Genji tales, Lady Murasaki takes a very feministic approach and the artists have kept maintained the same approach in their execution of the illustrations. The feministic attributes also imply that females be given more significance and what better way to do this than not making them appear identical to men. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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