Thursday, September 22, 2011

浮世絵... Pictures of a floating world

Usually the word ukiyo (浮世絵) is literally translated as "floating world" in English, referring to a conception of an evanescent world, impermanent, fleeting beauty and a realm of entertainments divorced from the responsibilities of the mundane, everyday world; "pictures of the floating world", i.e. ukiyo-e, are considered a genre unto themselves.

Japanese viewers, or those familiar with the genre of ukio-e would probably express a difference of opinion as to whether this photograph constitutes ukio-e.  In the traditional sense, it does not, either in subject or execution.  In the literal sense, well, you be the judge.

Photo: Bruce Behnke
(c) 2011