Pining for the Sakura (Part 1)

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I’ve been feeling a little under the weather so I haven’t posted much lately. Cherry blossom season just passed and I would like to tell you about my sad attempts to go for a hanami (cherry blossom viewing) picnic.

The area lolitas decided to do a hanami meetup two Sundays ago but rain was in the forecast so we went to the museum instead and postponed the hanami until the next Sunday. I was actually very happy to go to the museum because I wanted to see the exhibit and it was coming to an end – Pre-Raphelites; Victorian Avant-Garde, on loan from the Tate Museum in London. The exhibit is now over but the website is still up here. The exhibit was at the Mori Tower, in the same area as the Andy Warhol and Art & Technology exhibits I visited a little while ago (blog entry).

To briefly explain the exhibit, the Pre-Raphaelites were a bunch of rich Victorian hipsters that hated Raphael so they made a little club to get together and try and make a new style of art. Raphael and other Renaissance artists developed Mannerism, a style of painting that exaggerates certain body features to give more presence and a sense of grandeur to the artwork. Stuff like making extra long necks and hands, and making muscles looking extra pronounced and statuesque. Well the Pre-Rapahelites disliked this unnatural art style and wanted to make a more detailed and realistic modern style, while also touching on medieval art concepts before Raphael’s time. I hope I’ve got that correct – my apologies to people who know a lot about art!

Interestingly another club of rich Brits called The Clique made making fun of the Pre-Raphaelites as their main goal. I guess you can never escape the haters!

The exhibit was pretty nice and they had some really famous works like~

Ophelia by Sir John Everett Millais
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Proserpine by Dante Gabriel Rossetti

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The Beloved, also by Rossetti

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Christ in the House of His Parents, by Millais. The Wikipedia page on this painting is pretty amusing – people really hated it, including Charles Dickens who said Mary (kneeling on the floor) looks like a hideous alcoholic haha. Some other critic said that Jesus looks like “a red-headed Jew boy”.

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The Pre-Raphaelites loved red hair which made me really happy! So many paintings were of lovely ginger ladies with flowing hair, it made me proud! Of course another amazing thing about these works is the details! The attention to detail is amazing, like a rock will have a hundred little lines in it, or like in the painting above, each wood shaving on the floor was painted with painstaking detail. The first effect you feel is awe at everything going on, but I also noticed that everything being at such an intense level made me lose a little of the overall feeling in the painting and not really pay attention to the subject matter. The focal point(s) were kind of lost because you’re so busy looking at some wood grain or some other detail.

Well after the exhibit the rain stopped and we were all hungry so we went for pizza! It was super good! I got a picture of my outfit at the end of the day which is the worst time to take a photo, but here you go. I was classic lolita chess girl! I wanted an outfit that could get wet and I’m glad I did because it was crazy rainy and windy on the way to the museum. I’m wearing matching chess tights but they’re hard to see. Almost everything is from Innocent World!

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I think I’ll finish up this post in another part since this is getting long. To be continued…

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8 thoughts on “Pining for the Sakura (Part 1)

    • It was awesome! Probably the most gorgeous painting there. One of the best things about living in Tokyo are the amazing museums – I’d probably live 100 years in Miami without ever seeing an exhibit half as nice.

  1. I considered travelling to London, especially for that exhibition. I hope it will come to Paris. *fingers crossed* Pre-raphaelites also focused on Middle-Ages and Antiquity as a reaction to the quick industrialization of Great Britain. They wanted to revive/re-create a kind of fantasized “Golden age” (which probably never existed to begin with…).

    Lovely coordination!

    • I think the Tate museum is undergoing renovation now so that’s why the exhibit went to Japan. It would be cool if it did a world tour! I love their romantic renditions of medieval stories – it makes it seem like it wasn’t actually horrible to live during those times hehe

  2. Oh what a lovely day plan that was, i like the idea of visiting exhibits on lolita meetings. We sometimes do that here except nothing so fabulous of course. You looked lovely, you always look so natural in lolita!

    • There are so many art exhibits in Tokyo all the time that we do them often! Except everyone’s pace is different – usually I’m really slow looking at all the paintings and everyone has to wait for me at the end of the exhibit 😡 Thank you!

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