Draft 2

 

Visual Pleasure and Cultural Contact

The Yokohama Album

An unexpected adventure into Japanese photography.

 

The Yokohama Album is a term used to describe late 19th century Japanese albums of albumen photographs hand tinted depicting studio and scenic views of Japan during the Bakumatsu - Meiji period 1868 – 1912. The The late 19th century Japanese term for photography, “ Shashin”  “ to copy the truth” or “realism”.

 

While researching my great grand father James L. Breese, a society photographer in NYC in the late 19th century, I acquired from my aunt a treasure from one of his trips to Japan at the turn of the century. A beautifully decorated inlayed and lacquered album of 19th century images of Japan and its people. I had little information on the images so through the years it was always set aside. I had many unanswered questions. Time to time when I presented the images to photo historians they also had very little information to provide me other then they were a common photographs for traveling tourists of the day.

 

Recently my interest in the album has been renewed for I have been making images myself using the one of the earliest methods of photography, wet plate collodion, “ Ambrotypes”.  A process developed in 1851 by Frederic Scott Archer. Collodion is poured on a glass plate and carefully rocked back and fourth till is spread evenly on the glass plate, which then is sensitized in a silver nitrate solution and has to be exposed and developed while it is still wet. This rare and historic process produces a stunning high quality negative and positive. It was employed by well-known photographers as William Henry Jackson and Civil war photographer Mathew Brady. It was at this point when I came to learn that the wet plate process I was exploring had been used in many of the images from the Yokhama Album. Thus my interest in this album was renewed.

 

Now twenty years since acquiring the album the resources for research on the Internet have dramatically grown and with it exciting new information has surfaced answering many questions about this rare album. It has been an enlightening crash course on 19th century Japan and its beginnings in photography. Through the Nakasaki University on line archives, (http://oldphoto.lb.nagasaki-u.ac.jp) Terry Bennet and Rob Oechsle, I was able to identify a large portion of the collection. I found the locations the studios and many of the photographers behind the camera. This journey of rediscovery has led me into learning the personalities and styles of many of the photographers to the point where I now can identify with confidence many of the remaining “ unknown photographers”. But at this point they still have to be left as unknown till I can verify it with an image match from a university, museum collection or specialist in the field. Also it should be noted only half of the album can be displayed for each page of the album has a mounted photograph both on the front and the back thus I had to choose one side or the other. This was a difficult editing process. You can see the total set and full descriptions at www.gallerysink.com “ Breese Japan.

 

In the last couple years several books have been published on the subject.

Terry Bennett who was very friendly and helpful in my research:

I highly recommend his book if your interested in the subject.

 

Photography in Japan 1853-1912

By Terry Bennett

Published by Tuttle Publishing, 2006

ISBN 0804836337, 9780804836333

320 pages

             

Old Japanese Photographs Collectors' Data Guide

By Terry Bennett

Published by Old Japan (November 15, 2006)

ISBN-10: 0955400007, 13: 978-0955400001

300 pages

 

And others:

 

The History of Japanese Photography:

By Anne Wilkes Tucker,, Ktar Iizawa, Kaneko Ryuichi, Dana Friis-Hansen, Naoyuki Kinoshita, Takeba Joe, Museum of Fine Arts, Houston.

Published by Yale University Press

ISBN 0300099258, 9780300099256

405 pages

             

Reflecting Truth: Japanese Photography in the Nineteenth Century

By Nicole Coolidge Rousmaniere, Mikiko Hirayama, Sainsbury Institute for the Study of Japanese Arts and Cultures

Contributor Nicole Coolidge Rousmaniere, Mikiko Hirayama

Published by Hotei, 2004

ISBN 9074822762, 9789074822763

111 pages

 

Also my kind thanks for support from Rob Oechsle who’s dedicated research has answered many a questions for myself historians world wide.

His essay “ Searching for T. Enami ”  is an amazing find. 

 

And thank you Adam Lerner the director of the fine museum “ The Lab” in Denver Colorado for setting me a sail into this exciting  project of rediscovery.

 

Mark Breese Sink

 

 

From the collection of Mark Sink

 

 

*Ogawa Kazuma

"The Beauty with Sakura "

Bakumatsu - Meiji period 1868 - 1912

Hand Colored Albumen print

8x10" image 12x15" mount

A young woman with a parasol in her right hand wearing a kimono stands with three quarters of her body facing the front. Small cherry trees stand in full bloom to her right and left, This picture is called "the beauty with sakura ". It is a masterpiece of Ogawa Kazuma.

 

 

 

*Kusakabe Kimbei

Tamamura Kihei

“Shizuoka”

Bakumatsu - Meiji period 1868 – 1912

Hand Colored Albumen print

8x10" image 12x15" mount

Kashiwabara is located on the left bank of the mouth of Katsumata River, which pours into Suruga Bay. This may be the low wetlands near the mouth of the river. A sailing boat can be seen to the left and Mt. Fuji in the centre. The cameraman may have taken the photo from a boat. In the Morse Collection at the Salem Peabody Museum, there is a photo which is believed to be developed from the same negative as this photo. ( "Japan as seen by Morse ", published by Shogakkan).

 

 

 

 

 

*201 Takaboko

A picture of the view of Takahoko Island at the mouth of the Nagasaki

Photographer T. Enami

Nagasaki Bay Area

Bakumatsu - Meiji period 1883-1897

Hand Colored Albumen print

8x10" image 12x15" mount

 

This is a photo from the large lacquer-coated album of Kusakabe Kinpei and Ogawa Kazuma, with the caption,"201Takaboko." This is Ogawa's classification number. The photo was taken between 1892 and 1897. It is a view of Takahoko Island at the mouth of Nagasaki Harbour from the hillside of Tomachi. The cape beyond is Kozaki and the tip is Kozakibana, with Kaminoshima overlapping in the background. The area in the foreground is Megami, the narrowest channel on the approach to Nagasaki. In the Edo period, there were guard stations on the two banks, Tomachi and Nishidomari, and the Bizen Clan and Fukuoka Clan took turns every year to keep watch over the entrance to the harbour. There are many photos taken from this angle, but this photo provides a particularly clear view of the houses, cemetery, and sailing vessels in the harbour. Coal is stacked up in a stockyard on the opposite bank. The ship, an "isaba-sen" or fishing boat, seems to specialize in transporting coal from Takashima Island lying behind Takahoko Island in outer Nagasaki Harbour. The coal stocked here was probably supplied to ships visiting Nagasaki. The misty island in the centre is Takahoko Island. The cape sticking out from the right is Kanzaki, and from the left is Megami. In Tomachi, there was a guardhouse watching over boats coming into Nagasaki Harbor.

 

 

*Tamamura Kozaburo

 Collection; Ogawa; Kazumasa

Bakumatsu - Meiji period 1868 - 1912

Hand Colored Albumen print

8x10" image 12x15" mount

A lotus pond at Tsurugaoka Hachimangu Shrine.5

 

The photograph is labeled "No.53B. LOTUS FLOWERS AT KAMAKURA." A wooden torii gate is visible on the right. The red building on the left is Wakamiya, indicating that the building above it is the Jogu cloister. The riding trail said to have surrounded the pond during the Meiji Period. The vast size of the pond is emphasized by the comparison of the great lotus flower in the front and the trees in the distance.This photograph is included in the "Tamamura Kozaburo Collection." The date of the photograph is not known.

 

 

*Tamamura Kozaburo

Bakumatsu - Meiji period 1868 - 1912

Hand Colored Albumen print

8x10" image 12x15" mount

 

A woman has fallen asleep while reading and her head is resting on a high pillow. There is a traditional Japanese brazier by her feet, and water is being boiled in an iron kettle. There is a tea set (a teapot and teacups) on the round tray in front of her. A lamp stands next to her head. Monkeys are painted on the folding screen behind her.

 

 

 

 

*“Betto”

Kusakabe Kimbei

Tamamura Kozaburo

Bakumatsu - Meiji period 1868 – 1912

Hand Colored Albumen print

8x10" image 12x15" mount

A tattooed man leans against a wall. The colors were applied following the outline on the subject's back. This popular design was photographed by a number of different photographers.

 

 

 

Photographer Unknown

Bakumatsu - Meiji period 1868 - 1912

Hand Colored Albumen print

8x10" image 12x15" mount

Five women with hair covers and two men wearing headbands are planting rice shoots in a rice paddy. They line up, plant the rice shoots in a row, then step back and plant another row at an equal interval.

 

 

 

105 Sacred Bridge Nikko

Kamibashi Bridge,the Otani River

NIKKO DAIYAGAWA

Kusakabe Kimbei

Bakumatsu - Meiji period 1868 - 1912

Hand Colored Albumen print

8x10" image 12x15" mount

Before 35th year of Meiji

Nikko .The Kamibashi Bridge over Daiyagawa was painted red and located at the entrance of Nikko Shaji. Lost in a flood in 1902, the bridge had joints in the bridge girder as shown in the left side of the photo. The present Kamibashi has no joints in the bridge girder. There are no utility poles seen in the photo on the right hand Rinoji Temple side.

 

 

 

 

 

*Daibutsu (the Great Buddha) of Kamakura

Ogawa Kazumasa

Bakumatsu - Meiji period 1868 - 1912

Hand Colored Albumen print

8x10" image 12x15" mount

The Great Buddha has a height of 11.36 meters. The size can be understood from the comparison with the person in the photo. It is said to be a statue of a sitting Amida Bodhisattva.

 

Ogawa,Kazumasa

Cedar boulevard in Nikko Kaido

Bakumatsu - Meiji period 1868 - 1912

Hand Colored Albumen print

8x10" image 12x15" mount

 

 

*Uneo Park 55 Mukojima Tokio (Tokyo)

T. Enami

Bakumatsu - Meiji period 1868 - 1912

Hand Colored Albumen print

8x10" image 12x15" mount

In 1717, the 8th Shogun Tokugawa Yoshimune planted 100 cherry trees along the Mukojima riverbank, and the spot became popular for cherry blossom viewing. In 1883, when Okura Kihachiro planted an additional 1,000 trees here, the riverbank became full of cherry blossoms. Many simple teahouses were built along the riverbank for the use of visitors

 

“Home Bathing”

Unknown Photographer

Ogawa Kazumasa ?

Bakumatsu - Meiji period 1868 - 1912

Hand Colored Albumen print

8x10" image 12x15" mount

"Home Bathing." This scene of women bathing .A wooden bathtub is placed in a home bathroom setting . A young woman sits in a wooden pail bathtub, while the woman on the left stoops to wash her body with a hand towel. A half-naked woman stands on the right, This is a studio photograph depicting the life of the common people.

 

 

 

*Tamamura (album 1)

Bakumatsu - Meiji period 1868 - 1912

Hand Colored Albumen print

8x10" image 12x15" mount

Two women are sleeping side by side in the winter. The mattress is double layered, and two blankets are being used. There is an "andon" lamp and a brazier with a kettle near them. A folding screen illustrated with cranes is visible in the rear.

 

*Unknown Photographer

Bakumatsu - Meiji period 1868 - 1912

Hand Colored Albumen print

8x10" image 12x15" mount

Girls with beautiful kimono are standing with a "bangasa" umbrella. Bangasa umbrellas became popular among the common people during the Edo Period and were used widely. Prior to the late-18th century, straw raincoats and sedge hats were used for protection from the rain.

 

 

 

 

*Honmoku Point seen from Fudozaka Slope

Yokohama

Photographer T. Enami

Bakumatsu - Meiji period 1868 – 1912

Hand Colored Albumen print

8x10" image 12x15" mount

 

The promenade through from the Bluff of Yokohama to the hills in Negishi lead to the Fudosaka down to the beach. This photo was the place near Negishi village down from the Fudosaka. The village below is the Negishi village and the above is the Honmoku cape.

 

Negishi Bay was known to foreigners as "Mississippi Bay" after the nickname given to it by Commodore Perry. Part of the new road built for foreigners, Fudo Slope was praised by them as "one of the most beautiful scenes in the world." This area was later reclaimed from the ocean and is presently an industrial zone.

 

 

*Mt. Fuji seen from the Otome Pass

Unknown Photographer

Bakumatsu - Meiji period 1868 - 1912

Hand Colored Albumen print

8x10" image 12x15" mount

Shizuoka

 

Mt. Fuji viewed from Otome Pass at the border of Shizuoka and Kanagawa Prefectures, facing west. Otome Pass is part of the road to Gotenba, Shizuoka Prefecture via Sengokubara (Kanagawa) and Hakone. It has been famous since ancient times for its spectacular view of Mt. Fuji. During the Edo Period, travel restrictions were enforced and people were not allowed to pass. This photograph was taken close to the top of the pass.

 

 

Nikko Toshogu

Yomeimon gate of Nikko

Photographer T. Enami

Bakumatsu - Meiji period 1868 - 1912

Hand Colored Albumen print

8x10" image 12x15" mount

 

The facade of the Yomei Gate. A panel with the autograph of the Emperor Gosuio is hung in the center, and the upper layer is covered with carvings of dragons and the lower layer is covered with carvings of Chinese lions. The wall to the left and right is placed a statue of Zuishin. The wing moat to the right and left and the corridor connected to it has carvings in brilliant colors.

This is the rear of Yomeimon. The symbol of Nikko Toshogu, this gate displays craftsmanship and decorative techniques representative of the early Edo Period. The carvings on the gate total 508 in number and include people, animals (real and imaginary), flowers, birds, and patterns. It is also called "Higurashimon" (Evening Falling Gate) because visitors can stand looking at it all day long and still not tire of its beauty.

 

 

 

 

 

The Kamaguchi-bashi,a suspension bridge over the Fuji River

Shizuoka

Photographer T. Enami

Bakumatsu - Meiji period 1868 - 1912

Hand Colored Albumen print

8x10" image 12x15" mount

View, facing south, of the suspension bridge over Kamaguchi Gorge (a rugged section of Fuji River) between Naganuki in Shibakawa-cho and Setojima. The rapid flow of Fuji River makes bridges difficult to maintain. During the Edo Period, this was the only bridge over the river. Both banks are cliffs, and the width of the river is at its narrowest here. Several people are on the bridge, which is made of bamboo, wisteria vines and planks. There is also a suspension bridge made only of vines.

 

 

 

 

 

A wisteria trellis at Kameido Shrine

Photographer T. Enami

Tamamura,Kihei (Album)

Bakumatsu - Meiji period 1868 - 1912

Hand Colored Albumen print

8x10" image 12x15" mount

The English caption reads "Wisteria vine ". The wisteria vine of Kameido Tenjin in Tokyo was a famous site, and many photos of it remain.

Many festivals are celebrated throughout the year at Kameido Tenjin Shrine. While the Wisteria Festival is well-known, "Usokae Shinji" is also popular. This event is based on the belief that the mythical "uso" bird returns from the previous year and brings good luck with it. The conversation staged between the shrine priest and an oni (devil) at the "Setsubun Tsuinasai Festival" in February is also interesting. Since the oni has four eyes, the roof of the shrine office is embellished with ceramic tiles showing a devil with four eyes.

 

 

Dance lesson

Unknown Photographer

Bakumatsu - Meiji period 1868 - 1912

Hand Colored Albumen print

8x10" image 12x15" mount

Two young women wearing long-sleeved kimono practice Japanese dancing. One opens her fan, and the other sits on a cushion to play the shamisen. The background suggests a room, but the mat under their feet is inappropriate.

124_horimono_at_yomeimon_nikko

Photographer T. Enami

Bakumatsu - Meiji period 1868 - 1912

Hand Colored Albumen print

8x10" image 12x15" mount

Carvings at the cliosters of the Yomeimon Gate,Toshogu Shrine,Nikko

This is the south side of the 220m corridor that stretches east to west from the "sodebei" wall of Yomeimon at Nikko Toshogu. The south side is decorated with 25 different carvings. A candlestick is attached to each carving to light the corridor.

The corridor to the right and left of Yomei Gate has pillars painted in red and divided in 15 sections to the right and 8 sections to the left. It is divided by perpendicular wooden pillars, with flowers, birds, and waterfowl carved in the panel boards. It is covered in gold and painted in brilliant green, red and other colours. The buildings of Toshogu feature about 5,000 different carvings of 100 types of animal and plant.

 

 

 

*Shitekago

Unknown Photographer

Bakumatsu - Meiji period 1868 - 1912

Hand Colored Albumen print

8x10" image 12x15" mount

A woman is riding on a palanquin used for road and mountain passages. The bottom part of the seat is made of braided bamboo and shows no sagging. A cushion absorbed shocks. This may be a "shitekago" because the straw curtain seems to be rolled up. This kind of palanquin was made simply of four bamboo poles and braided bamboo sticks with straw curtain attached. The palanquin bearers had no set uniforms but carried "ikizue" (breath sticks) to regulate breathing.

Bearers of carriages were called "rokushaku" and were distinguished from palanquin bearers. At lodging towns on main routes, kumosuke, or palanquin bearers, demanded money other than tips. The usual palanquin ran one Japanese mile in an hour, but the quick palanquins ran the distance between Edo and Kyoto in four days and a half.

 

 

 

*A women riding a "jinrikisha" (rickshaw)

Unknown Photographer

Bakumatsu - Meiji period 1868 - 1912

Hand Colored Albumen print

8x10" image 12x15" mount

Rickshaws became popular instead of the palanquins after the Meiji era. A woman holds an umbrella and the rickshaw man bends forward. A photo with a popular structure.

 

 

A sumo champion performing pre-match rituals.

Unknown Photographer

Bakumatsu - Meiji period 1868 - 1912

Hand Colored Albumen print

8x10" image 12x15" mount

A "yokozuna" (grand champion sumo wrestler) enters the ring in ceremonial style. He is flanked on the left and right by the "tachimochi" sword bearer and "tsuyuharai" herald.

 

*219 Wrestling

Photographer Adolfo Farsari (Studio)

Possibly acquired from early Beto/ Stillfried studio.

Late Meiji (1898-1912)

Hand Colored Albumen print

8x10" image 12x15" mount

This is a staged photograph depicting sumo included in a Yokohama album*. The ring was made for the occasion at the studio. The men's physique suggests that they are professional sumo wrestlers. The technique demonstrated is called "kirikaeshi" (twisting backward knee trip).

 

 

 

Two Woman , Smoking and Tea

Photographer Unknown

Bakumatsu - Meiji period 1868 - 1912

Hand Colored Albumen print

8x10" image 12x15" mount

33 Jizo Hakone

Photographer T. Enami

Bakumatsu - Meiji period 1868 - 1912

Hand Colored Albumen print

8x10" image 12x15" mount

87 Wrestlers

Photographer Unknown

Bakumatsu - Meiji period 1868 - 1912

Hand Colored Albumen print

8x10" image 12x15" mount

 

 

 

*135 Iyeyasu Karamon

Photographer T. Enami

Bakumatsu - Meiji period 1868 - 1912

Hand Colored Albumen print

8x10" image 12x15" mount

 

191 Kasakamurijzo Nikko

Photographer T. Enami

Bakumatsu - Meiji period 1868 - 1912

Hand Colored Albumen print

8x10" image 12x15" mount

 

 

*220 Oswa Park

Photographer T. Enami

Bakumatsu - Meiji period 1868 - 1912

Hand Colored Albumen print

8x10" image 12x15" mount

 

282 Gojrozaka

Photographer T. Enami

Bakumatsu - Meiji period 1868 - 1912

Hand Colored Albumen print

8x10" image 12x15" mount

 

*292_Haruna_lake

Photographer Unknown

Bakumatsu - Meiji period 1868 - 1912

Hand Colored Albumen print

8x10" image 12x15" mount

 

327_fuji_from_voshiwara

Photographer Unknown

Bakumatsu - Meiji period 1868 - 1912

Hand Colored Albumen print

8x10" image 12x15" mount

 

*528 Farmers Tourist

Photographer T. Enami

Baumatsu - Meiji period 1868 - 1912

Hand Colored Albumen print

8x10" image 12x15" mount

 

*567 Japnaese Priest

Photographer T. Enami

Bakumatsu - Meiji period 1868 - 1912

Hand Colored Albumen print

8x10" image 12x15" mount

 

*215_Wrestlers

Photographer Unknown

Bakumatsu - Meiji period 1868 - 1912

Hand Colored Albumen print

8x10" image 12x15" mount

 

C 26 Fuji-Yama from Yoshiwara

Photographer Adolfo Farsari (Studio)

Possibly acquired from early Beto/ Stillfried studio.

Bakumatsu - Meiji period 1868 - 1912

Hand Colored Albumen print

8x10" image 12x15" mount

 

 

 

187 Iemitsu Temple Nikko

Photographer T. Enami

Bakumatsu - Meiji period 1868 - 1912

Hand Colored Albumen print

8x10" image 12x15" mount

 

*daughter_woman

Photographer Unknown

Bakumatsu - Meiji period 1868 - 1912

Hand Colored Albumen print

8x10" image 12x15" mount

 

*four_carts_with_woman

Photographer Unknown

Bakumatsu - Meiji period 1868 - 1912

Hand Colored Albumen print

8x10" image 12x15" mount

 

*Kids

Photographer Unknown

Bakumatsu - Meiji period 1868 - 1912

Hand Colored Albumen print

8x10" image 12x15" mount

 

*Coolie_smoking

Photographer Unknown

Bakumatsu - Meiji period 1868 - 1912

Hand Colored Albumen print

8x10" image 12x15" mount

 

Plants on cart two boys

Photographer Unknown

Bakumatsu - Meiji period 1868 - 1912

Hand Colored Albumen print

8x10" image 12x15" mount

 

Street puppet man with children

Photographer Unknown

Bakumatsu - Meiji period 1868 - 1912

Hand Colored Albumen print

8x10" image 12x15" mount

 

*Tea Server

Photographer Unknown

Bakumatsu - Meiji period 1868 - 1912

Hand Colored Albumen print

8x10" image 12x15" mount

 

Two woman playing music

Bakumatsu - Meiji period 1868 - 1912

Hand Colored Albumen print

8x10" image 12x15" mount

 

295 Maples Oji

Photographer T. Enami

Bakumatsu - Meiji period 1868 - 1912

Hand Colored Albumen print

8x10" image 12x15" mount

Breese group opening page of Yokohama Album

Photographer Unknown

Bakumatsu - Meiji period 1868 - 1912

Hand Colored Albumen print

8x10" image 12x15" mount