Friday, 30 December 2016

Shiny Cicada

#cicada #hanzi #kanji #typographicart #semi
My aim for this piece was to try to reflect the shiny greens of a cicada exoskeleton with a hint of the blue of the hot summer skies they sing under and the intense greens of summer foliage Enjoy SHARE

Sunday, 25 December 2016


#cicada Hanzi #technozi #card #unihan #kanji

Continuing the #cicada theme since its summer in my hemisphere

Copyright Julie Vaux 2016  

A note on the Vietnamese. Most dictionaries list the Vietnamese NON sinitic word and not the SV SinoVietnamese "Literary"  equivalent so this is one case of Sinitic loanwords not dominating the Austroasiatic original ! Japanese haiku poets also prefer to use SEMI over SEN.

Tuesday, 20 December 2016

Cicadas and Chiyo

#haiku #chiyo #summer #cicadas

Its mid summer where I am and we have cicadas in Australia.


Taki no ne mo / hosoru ya mine ni / semi no koe 

waterfall of sound despite stretching thin (voice like thread) mountains at cicadas of voice

Let's change that into something that sounds and reads a bit more "poetic" in English

Despite the roar of the waterfall 
Spreading thinly around the peaks
The voice of the cicadas

Despite is perhaps a rather generous interpretation of mo but it works

Cicadas in Japan allegedly like rock crevices as much as they prefer trees in Sydney.
Chiyo uses peaks mine instead of yama. Perhaps she was visiting the Hakusan Mountains South and South East of Matto City ?

I will have more technozi for you over the Christmas but there will be some bumping of old posts.

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Sunday, 18 December 2016

The nagamureba mystery

and why this post is SOOO late
#waka #bungo #heian #japanese poetry

Okay apart from having to finish a project I got stuck on one word

Here's me thinking #nagamureba was a potential conditional passive of #nagameru in some wierd BUNGO spelling but it just didnt fit and then finally the other day I try one more search parameter combination and discover the verb #nagamuru !

So finally my translation of #HyakuIsshu 81 by #fuji #sanesada

first the word for word

hototogisu                        japanese cuckoo summer kigo
nakitsuru kata wo            singing action not state
nagamureba                      looks and sounds like verb meaning look at intensely
                                          BUT MUREBA the singing pun on looking would have lasted longer
tada ariake no                    only (now implied?) it is dawn
tsuki zo nokoreru              the moon lingered


The Hototogisu singing has or should have lasted so long that now it is dawn and yet the moon has lingered on?

It sounds so much better in Japanese and rather more melancholy in English?

Note the sound pattern

hoToTogisu NakiTSuru kata wo Nagamureba Tada ariake no TSuki zo Nokoreru

Yes readers I do NOT have access to a copy of Morohashi but I do have McCullough
thought it was on google I found a couple of references to nagamuru as a verb.
There is no mention of this in Nelson either. Grumble.

Tuesday, 13 December 2016

Ando Jubei Cloisonne

#AndoJubei #cloisonne #shippo #japanese

Here is an excellent example both of #Cloisonne and how the Japanese took a familiar theme and translate it into differing materials. You may see similar compositions in and on paintings prints lacquer and ceramics but how would they differ?

Cloisonne versus Ceramics 

If this was a ceramics box it would be probably be slipcast or form molded porcelain and while you could get that gray with a clear glaze over a stain it might have a bluer tint or some crackling.
Modern industrial processes of spraying underglazes and glazes and computer controlled kilns would allow for multiple copies.

Cloisonne verses Lacquer 

You simply couldn't get that shade of gray with lacquer. Maybe a high quality plastic trying to imitate lacquer but not TRUE lacquer.

Cloisonne and Painting or Prints

The gray would be ink and more details and clouds. The reflection would be more difficult to create since its white on gray.

This little box really demonstrated why works from the Ando Jubei studio and company are collectible. When you have a master who knows how mediums influence each other and understands his materials and doesnt just copy an image in a different material but uses that material to make changes ...craft becomes art.

A final thing to consider is the great restraint shown here. If you google cloisonne you'll get dozens of images of vases and other items adorned with elaborate patterns of flowers or interlocking patterns but this masterpiece shows an understanding of enameling that is genius level! Limited use of wire outlines. A perfectly fired gray background with no flaws and highlight of pure white for contrast. 
Oh and the wonderful balance of the color of the branches to the interior of the box!

Sunday, 4 December 2016

Shippo and Cloisonne

Japanese Cloisonne or Shippo can look very similar to "enamel" porcelain but its a different kind of enamels! metal base with wires and powdered pigments applied within the outlines like this beuatiful example by Ando Jubei

Another Ando Jubei