Message Card – Mamemaki

A high-quality woodblock printed card with an envelope from Kyoto.

£7 per item

This message card was hand-printed by skilled craftspeople using woodblocks. This method of printing was adopted in Japan during the Edo-period (1603-1868 CE) for printing books and creating decorations, produced on both paper and canvas. To create these cards, reliefs of an original design are carved by hand into wooden blocks, with one block for each colour involved.
This card features an embossed pattern of oni (demons, ogres), birds and scattered beans.
This picture of this card refers to the mamemaki, bean-throwing tradition which is part of new year celebrations, and which happens on the day before the beginning of spring according to the lunar calendar. On this day soybeans are scattered with accompanying shouts of ‘Oni wa soto! Fuku wa uchi!’ meaning ‘Devils out! Fortune in!’. This tradition is considered a purifying ritual to drive away evil spirits before the beginning of the new year. Using red and white colours, popular for celebrations in Japan, the card is meant to depict birds enjoying the treat that has just been scattered to chase away oni.

Size: approx. L9.2 cm x W9.2 cm

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