Kushibiki Yumindo

Kushibiki Yumindo

Product Description

Kushibiki Yumindo
Cover of guide book, the Japan-British Exhibition London, 1910 and Sada Yacco by Picasso, La Danseuse Sada Yacco, 1900.

Kushibiki Yumindo (1859-1924), King of Expo. He was born in Gonohe-cho, Aomori Prefecture.

He was a Japanese emigre who lived in the United States. A graduate of Keio University, he had made his fortune catering to the craze for exotic Japonism(e) that was sweeping the West.

He made Japanese garden at Chicago Expo in 1893. He brought in the Kawakami Theatre to US in 1899. Also, he worked for Saint Louis and Seattle Expos. He was manager of " Japan Beautiful" at the Japan-British Exhibition London, 1910.

Along with a business partner he had opened a Japanese Tea Garden in Atlantic City, New Jersey. It was extremely successful and popular. Even the president, William McKinley, had paid visit.

It was every Westerner's dream of Japan. The centerpiece was a picturesque teahouse not much bigger than a dollhouse, of wood, bamboo, and paper. There visitors could enjoy Japanese tea and cakes served by kimono-clad "tea girls." All around were landscaped gardens with carp pond,waterfalls, and bonsai trees. There was also a gallery selling woodblock prints, painted screens, fabric, ceramics, fans, and more bonsai. To entertain visitors there were shows by Japanese magicians, acrobats, and dancers.

Sada Yacco or Sadayakko (1871-1946) was a Japanese actress and dancer. Born in Tokyo as Koyama Sada, Sadayakko was trained as a geisha and came to the attention of the prominent Japanese politician Ito Hirobumi, who took an interest in furthering her education. In 1894 she married the actor Kawakami Otojiro, to whom she had been introduced by Hirobumi. She would later be known as Sada Yacco.

Sadayakko performed in the company her husband founded, The Kawakami Theatre, when it was considered improper for women to perform on stage with men. In 1899, the troupe toured America and Europe, and became the first Japanese theater company to be seen in the west. Performances were held in San Francisco, and New York City in the United States, as well as at the 1900 Exposition Universelle in Paris (with theatrical lighting there done by Loie Fuller) and several other European cities.