Female Figures - detail
Du Jin 杜堇 (painted late 15th to early 16th centuries).
In this painting Du Jin captures the social life of the upper-class woman. Families lived in enclaves
that included brothers, cousins, uncles, as well as grandparents. The women spent their time in this ready-made 'neighborhood.'
The women came from families of the same social strata, often from distant relations, to be wives and concubines.
Unmarried daughters of the household joined the women, although most would have left to join their husband's household before maturity.
The scroll dates from the Ming period.
(c) Marilyn Shea, 2006, 2007