Jazz in translation

An entryway display to the Smart Museum’s Richard and Mary L. Gray Gallery reveals the focus of its latest exhibition: “moga,” or modern young women, the Japanese equivalent of Roaring ‘20s flappers. Composed of muted grays, taupe, green, salmon, and a splash of teal, the portrait shows a Japanese girl holding a traditional fan while wearing a contemporary pleated dress with sheer black stockings and funky jewelry.

Taishô Chic: Japanese Modernity, Nostalgia, and Deco spotlights the social role of Japanese women during the reign of Emperor Taishô (1915–26) through the mid-1930s, when traditional Japanese art and conservative values were integrated with popular Western styles. Organized by the Honolulu Academy of Arts, this collection includes more than 60 items such as woodblock prints, folding screens, figurines, household goods, kimonos, and other decorative artifacts.

Taishô Chic will be at the Smart Museum through June 20.

Joy Olivia Miller

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Photos (from left to right): Woman's Kimono, Second quarter of the 20th century, Silk, plain weave, stencil-printed warp and weft kasuri. Courtesy of the Honolulu Academy of Arts, Gift of the Christensen Fund, 1998; Round Fan Advertising Jintan, with Photos of Irie Takako and Hamaguchi Fujiko, c. early 1930s, Paper and wood. Courtesy of the Honolulu Academy of Arts, Gift of Mauree D'Honau, 1997; Yamakawa Shûhô, Three Sisters (Sannin no Shimai), 1936, Screen. Courtesy of the Honolulu Academy of Arts; Kobayakawa Kiyoshi, Tipsy, 1930, Color woodblock print. Courtesy of the Honolulu Academy of Arts, Gift of the Philip H. Roach, Jr. Collection, 2001.

June 9, 2004