Artcyclopedia: Ukiyoe Printmaking Ukiyo-e (pronounced oo-kee-oh-ay) was a style of popular art in Japan during the Edo period, inexpensive and usually depicting scenes from everyday life.
Ukiyo translates as "floating world" - an ironic wordplay on the Buddhist name for the earthly plane, "the sorrowful world." Ukiyo was the name given to the lifestyle in Japan's urban centers - the fashions, the high life, and the pleasures of the flesh. Ukiyo-e is the art documenting this era.
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