USC Pacific Asia Museum

Join Donate
46 North Los Robles Avenue
Pasadena, California 91101
Open Wednesday through Sunday 10am to 6pm
Translations Chinese Simple Chinese Traditional Japanese Korean Espanol
USC Pacific Asia Museum

Join our Mailing List



A Spring Scene?Woman Folding Robe
A Spring Scene–Woman Folding Robe, Japan, 19th century, Kikugawa Eizan, woodblock print on paper, USC Pacific Asia Museum Collection. Gift of Mrs. Elizabeth Lowrie in memory of Mr. Robert T. Lowrie, 1978.16.92

Japan in Blue and White

March 25, 2010 – March 6, 2011
In the Frank and Toshie Mosher Gallery of Japanese Art

In Japan, the pairing of blue and white has resulted in some of the most dramatic and uniquely Japanese designs. Indigo blue dye has been used to embellish textiles for centuries, while the mineral cobalt oxide has been used since the 17th century as an underglaze pigment on ceramics. In the early 19th century, a third blue pigment, Prussian blue, was imported from Europe and was so popular that it gave rise to a type of woodblock print known as aizuri-e, or "pictures printed in blue." These three blue pigments were originally employed for practical reasons – indigo dye repelled mosquitoes, cobalt oxide is one of the most stable underglaze ceramic pigments, and Prussian blue was colorfast. Mainly drawn from the Museum’s collection, the exhibition will focus on blue and white ceramics, textiles and woodblock prints to illustrate the history of three blue pigments and their development in Japan.

Guest-curated by Meher McArthur

This exhibition was made possible by Setsuko Oka in honor of Grace Oka Latham

Related Events:

Saturday, April 17, 2010, 11am
Curator's Tour: Explore the science and art of color in Japan in Blue and White with Meher McArthur.

Friday, May 7, 2010
Members at the Chrysanthemum level and above enjoy a celebration of Japan in Blue and White.To RSVP or learn more about how you can become an upper level member, please contact Chelsea at 626-449-2742 ext 37.