Wednesday, 19 August 2009

sento in art

This ukiyoe print (click to view larger size) is an old one by Kunisada and happens to be one of my favourites. It's a quite a wide print so it's hard to see the full view here but I did notice that someone lovely has put it up on flickr in sections (see 2nd row of prints). I bought a copy of this print while living in Japan because it reminded me so much of my daily journey to the local public bathhouse (sento) to bathe as I didn't have a bathroom in my teeny tiny Kyoto apartment. In the full print you can see some of the antics of the local women as they bathe together. The sento is a lively place, that's for sure. Women (and men but not together) gather nightly to catch up on the day's news with each other, gossip a little, relax and wash! And I LOVED it all. Even on the coldest of winter's nights when the last thing I wanted to do is walk 3 mins down the road for a bath, going there and soaking in those tubs was the best way to treat a tired body and was like a big sleep sedative.


  1. I like the idea of the communal end-of-day ritual. Not sure about a bathe, but I'll try anything.

  2. yay for sento! what a great print.

  3. Yes, it is a gorgeous print. I'm sorry the image here is so small so do look at the flickr link images to see more detail.