March 14 to October 11, 2020
The word geisha is made up of two characters, gei means ‘art’ or ‘accomplished’ and sha means ‘person.’ Therefore it can be translated as ‘accomplished person’ or ‘person who lives by the arts.’
The fascinating life of Ichimaru (1906-1997), one of the most famous geishas of the 20th Century, is told through this collection of her magnificent kimono and personal effects. The exhibition features 34 kimono, 15 obi, in addition to a number of woodblock prints and paintings. Together, they help to draw the curtains back on the complexities of geishas and the depth of the role they played within Japanese society.
Organized and circulated by the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria.
Curated by Barry Till, Curator Emeritus of Asian Art.
Dive into this collection of resources that help bring the exhibition to life. Check back often as we add more!
CURATOR’S TALK WITH BARRY TILL
TOUR THE EXHIBITION VIDEO SERIES
Part 1: What is a Geisha? Who was Ichimaru? Plus, take a closer look at a few of her kimono.
Part 2: Take a closer look at the elaborate headwear of Ichimaru, and other accessories Geisha would wear.
Part 3: What is a Shamisen? Learn about the development of Ichimaru’s musical career and her rise to fame which helped transform her from Geisha to Diva.
Part 4: we conclude our mini tour series by exploring some of the art that was inspired by the geisha, as well as some interesting trivia about Ichimaru’s life and some of the people she met throughout her career.
AT HOME ART ACTIVITY
Dive into the world of origami with us! Learn a simple technique that will show you how to fold your own original coloured paper into a beautiful mini-kimono.