Through 140 masterworks of paintings, woodblock prints, and books, Designed for Pleasure examines-in the context of Japan's famous floating world-aesthetic, social, and commercial forces active in contemporary art today: fashion, celebrity, marketing, and popular culture. Ukiyo, literally, "floating world," means something like "going with the flow." In practice, this implied disporting oneself in the pleasure quarters and theater districts of Edo, Kyoto, and Osaka that captivated the popular imagination of Japan from the late seventeenth to late nineteenth centuries. E means "picture." Ukiyo-e (pronounced oo-key-yo-ay) are the paintings and woodcuts that depict the floating world, a term that has become identified with this milieu and, by extension, its activities and the native landscape.moreless
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