Feature Exhibition Room

Feature Exhibition: The Doll Festival and Japanese Ningyō
February 18, 2017 - March 20, 2017

Hina dolls are associated with the Doll Festival, or hina matsuri, which takes place around March 3rd each year. Though widely considered to be an ancient ritual, the tradition of displaying and celebrating dolls on a specific day dates only to the early 1600s, in the Edo period. Some types of Edo period hina dolls are named after the time periods with which they are associated, as in the kan’ei bina dolls (named after the Kan’ei era, 1624–1645) or kyōho bina dolls (after the Kyōhō era, 1716–1736). The jirozaemon bina dolls are named after a Kyoto doll maker, Jirōzaemon. The kokin bina dolls are considered to be a new Edo period innovation, while the yūsoku bina courtier dolls faithfully represent the costume and hair conventions of the aristocracy. This extensive selection of dolls offers the opportunity carefully at differences in their details, including facial expressions, gestures, and costumes.

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