Please contact JapanesePrints-London for prices of catalogued items. We also purchase prints, paintings and books individually or as collections. Richard Kruml also appraises and values collections.

 

Taiso YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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Wakashima Gonemon swimming underwater with a large rope attempting to retrieve the ancient dragon-headed bell of the Dragon God. The beams of light indicate its location. In the event, the rope broke and the bell is supposedly still in situ at the bottom of the Sumida river. The best design from Azuma no nishiki ukiyo kodan, “Tales of the Floating World on Eastern Brocade.” The stories retold by Kanagaki Robun (text at top). Published by Masudaya, 11/1867.

 

Very good impression, colour and condition. Full size. Signed Ikkaisai Yoshitoshi hitsu.

 

Status: Available

 

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Utagawa Toyokuni I (1769-1825)




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A pupil of Toyoharu, he is best known for his fine actor prints at the end of the 18th century. He had many pupils. A koban surimono showing Ichikawa Danjuro VII in Shibaraku with the voluminous costume and chikara gami “strength papers” sticking up at the back of his wig. Issued for the New Year 1810 (confirmed by the characters hatsu-ushi [“the first year of the ox”] in the first line of the left-hand poem). Interestingly, Danjuro did perform Shibaraku in the play Misao no hana toba koizuka at the Ichimura-za theatre just a couple of months before (11th month, 1809). The role name being Kaneomaru.

 

Very good impression and colour. Minor toning, otherwise very good condition. Signed Toyokuni ga.

 

Status: Available

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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A famous triptych: The ghosts of the Taira warriors attacking Yoshitsune’s ship in Daimotsu bay. Shows Minamoto no Yoshitsune (1159-89) aboard his ship Tsukimaru sailing along the coast of Settsu Province at Daimotsu. It was here that the Minamoto and Taira clans clashed and many Taira warriors perished. It is the ghosts of these that rise from the waves to attack Yoshitsune. His men struggle to lower the sail while Yoshitsune’s loyal retainer, Benkei, rubs his prayer beads and offers prayers to the gods of the sea and to Kannon, the Bodhisattva of mercy and the storm abates. Published 1849-51 by Enshuya Hikobei.

 

A very nice example of this rare print: A number of states exist, the earliest having white lines in the waves lower right. The main differences are with the ghosts. The horns and eyes are removed but the printing and gradation of these varies as well. This impression has the lines but the eyes and horns removed so seems to be an intermediate state between first and second editions. There is no great variation in impression between these states. Very good impression and colour. Slightly trimmed. otherwise very good condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

Status: Available

 

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Kitagawa UTAMARO (1753-1806)




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A triptych showing a bride changing into her going-away dress, Konrei iro-naoshi no zu. There is another triptych of the actual wedding ceremony which can be viewed with this to form a hexaptych design, Sanmai-tsuzuki. Published by Maruya Bunemon, 1804. Other impressions in Shibui, Ukiyo-e zuten, Utamaro, 1964, p. 38/9; Ukiyo-e Taisei 7, 1931, no. 346; Ukiyo-e shuka 3, 1978, no. 356. Rare.

 

Fine impression. Very good, well retained colour. Large margins on last two sheets, first sheet very slightly trimmed, otherwise very good condition. Signed Utamaro hitsu.

 

Status: Available

 

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Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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One of Yoshitoshi’s finest designs: Gikeiki Gojobashi no zu. The fight between Ushiwaka and Benkei on Gojo Bridge, Kyoto. The story relates how Benkei only needs one more blade to add to the 999 he has wrenched from samurai attempting to cross the bridge in order to fashion an invincible weapon. Benkei loses the fight and becomes Yoshitsune’s loyal retainer. Published 1881 by Morimoto Junzaburo.

 

Fine impression and colour. Very slight trimming, otherwise fine condition. Signed Taiso Yoshitoshi ga.

 

Status: Available

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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Tsukudajima from the series Toto meisho, “Famous Places in Edo.” Shows two women and a boatman being rowed beneath Eitai bridge. In the distance is Tsukudajima Island. It was here that large vessels would anchor at the mouth of the Sumida river to transfer their cargos to smaller boats. Devotional prayer slips float down during the Bon Odori festival, 13-15 July, commemorating those that have drowned in the river. A set of ten prints with western influences published by Kagaya Kichiemon, c 1832-3. Ex Kessler collection. Rare.

 

Very good impression: Early states have a grey tone on the bottom of the bridge supports (as here). A late edition has recut clouds. Slight fading and centre fold, otherwise good condition. The green border intact (so often trimmed off). Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyshi ga.

 

Status: Available

 

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Kikukawa EIZAN (1787-1867)




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An original painting by Eizan who was the leading exponent of bijinga in the early 1800s producing many fine oban, triptych and shunga designs. He founded the Kikukawa School. Surprisingly, given his output of prints, his paintings are rare. This beautiful example, full colour on silk, 35 x 14.5 in; 88.9 x 36.8 cms, shows a courtesan reading a letter. Her sumptuous clothes are restrained in pattern and colour before the excesses of later years and other artists. Another example, not as fine as offered here, is in the Tokyo National Museum and is illustrated in their catalogue Ukiyo-e Painting Exhibition, 1993, no. 72, p. 64. The British Museum has a very slight painting of a beauty by Eizan illustrated in Ukiyo-e Paintings in the British Museum, Timothy Clark, Smithsonian Institution, 1992, no. 148, p. 195. One other fine example is illustrated in Masterpieces of ukiyo-e paintings from the Weston collection, various authors, 2015, no. 106, p. 161. Painted c. 1815-25. Signed Kikukawa Eizan hitsu with seals Kikukawa and Toshinobu. In very good condition having been recently remounted.

 

Status: Available

 




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Taiso YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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A vertical diptych: Mongaku shonin aragyo no zu. One of a series of 16 vertical diptychs published in the 1880s. Shows the priest Mongaku atoning for his sins in the icy waters of the Nachi waterfall but being saved just in time by Seitaka doji, one of the two main boy servants of the Buddhist guardian deity Fudo-myoo (shown above). Published by Matsui Eikichi, 1885.

 

Very fine impression. Fine colour. The first edition with the title printed in red at the bottom. On thick deluxe hosho. Slight bleeding of the red seal, otherwise fine condition with the extra paper at left and top. Signed Oju Yoshitoshi ga.

 

Status: Available

 

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Katsukawa SHUN’EI (1762-1819)




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A hosoban diptych complete showing Ichikawa Monnosuke II ( left sheet ) as Soga no Goro and Sawamura Sojuro III ( right sheet ) as Soga no Juro in the play Shunshoku Edo-e Soga performed at the Ichimura-ya in the first month of 1791. Published by Harimaya Shinshichi. Most hosoban multiples have become separated over time.


Very good impression, colour and condition. Completely untrimmed. Signed Shun’ei ga.


Status: Available

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Ichiryusai HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)




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Ichiryusai HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)

A bluebird and a branch of wild rose. A chuban print published c 1835-9. A very similar design with the same poem is in the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, acquisition number 21.9729 and also a chutanzaku design, acquisition number 21.7997. Rare.

 

Fine impression. Very good colour. Minor marks, otherwise very good condition. Signed Ichiryusai Hiroshige hitsu with Ichiryusai seal.

 

Status: Available

 

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Cho GESSHO (1772-1832) and Kazaore YUJO (fl. c. 1790-1800)




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5 vols. complete: Zoku Koya Bunko, “The Sequel to Koya Library.” Vol. 1: 52 sheets; 48 illus. Vol. 2: 49 sheets; 48 illus. Vol. 3: 53 sheets; 51 illus. Vol. 4: 53 sheets; 52 illus. Vol. 5: 56 sheets; 54 illus. Preface, 5 pp. by Kogetsutei, dated Kansai 9 (1797). Artists: Kazaore Yujo and Cho Gessho. Published by Fugetsu Magosuke, Nagoya, Kansai 10 (1798), together with other publishers in Edo, Osaka and Kyoto. The greatest anthology of printed haiga (haiku poems accompanied by illustrations based on simple, yet often profound, observations of everyday life). The anthology was started by Yujo but taken over by Gessho on his death. Most of the work is Gessho’s. This is one of the few books where the block-cutter and printer must take pride of place beside the artist. The most striking effects were achieved by these artisans by imaginative working of the block surface and wiping of the blocks to produce distinctive variations in texture and formless adumbrations of trees, plants and landscapes, all in sumi. Other examples: Duret 464 (5 vols. 1799); Gonse (III), 438 (4 vols., 1798); Holloway 18; Ryerson, pl. XI. Original covers and title slips. Some slight damage to covers and slight restored wormage at bottom of first sheets of vol. 1. But otherwise an exceptionally fine and clean copy with hardly any thumbing on corners. A lovely and rare set.

 

Status: Available

 




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Kishi GANTAI (1782-1865)




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An extremely large painting, 55.5 x 32 in; 141 x 81.3 cms, sumi and light colour on silk. Shows a pair of Sika deer, their summer coats spotted and white. Gantai was the son and pupil of Ganku, and together with his brother, Renzan, carried on the Kishi school tradition. With his father, worked on the paintings for the new Kanazawa Castle in 1809. A highly accomplished painter, especially of kachoga. This is possibly the largest Gantai painting and it’s interesting to compare with the gajo by him also offered on this update. In very good condition. Framed and glazed. Signed Chikuzennosuke Gantai hitsu with seals Gantai and Kunchin.

 

Status: Available

 




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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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A diptych showing the actors Bando Shuka (left) as O-kaji, wife of Danshichi, with sword drawn attacking Seki Sanjuro III as the old hag, wife of Giheiji of Mikawa-cho in pouring rain. From the play Shinzo Tsurifune kidan performed at the Ichimura theatre, 5/1852. Published by Kakumotoya Kinjiro. Kuniyoshi designed another version of this play in the same year for another publisher.

 

Fine impression and colour. Very good condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

Status: Available

 

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Hosoda EISHI (1756-1829)




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A small chuban print showing silkworm cultivation. Two girls feed mulberry leaves to the silkworms, another stands behind. A certain license was taken with this subject and designs did not necessarily faithfully follow the procedure or the girls truly depict the actual labourers. Published by Nishimuraya Yohachi, c 1800. This set (probably of 12) would have been printed two-to-a-sheet. Rare.

 

Fine impression and fine unfaded colours. Fine condition. Signed Eishi ga.

 

Status: Available

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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The poetess Ome Shushiki (1668-1725) looking at a poem attached to a tree at Ueno. A chu-tanzaku set of eight prints: Kenjo hakkei, “Eight Views of Accomplished Women.” The set published by Ibaya Sensaburo, c 1843-5. Based on the famous Chinese Eight Views, Japanese artists designed many sets using the Eight Views of Omi as their starting point. Here, Vesper Bell at Ueno [Miidera].

 

Very good impression and colour. Minor trimming (usual, as they were printed two-to-a-sheet), otherwise very good condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

Status: Available

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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Kogo no Tsubone (1157 – ?) on a balcony after being banished from court. A chu-tanzaku set of eight prints: Kenjo hakkei, “Eight Views of Accomplished Women.” The set published by Ibaya Sensaburo, c 1843-5. Based on the famous Chinese Eight Views, Japanese artists designed many sets taking the Eight Views of Omi as their starting point. Here, Autumn Moon over Saga Moor [Ishiyama].

 

Very good impression and colour. Minor trimming (usual, as they were printed two-to-a-sheet), otherwise very good condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

Status: Available

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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The faithful wife of Mama walking on a hillside with falling maple leaves. A chu-tanzaku set of eight prints: Kenjo hakkei, “Eight Views of Accomplished Women.” The set published by Ibaya Sensaburo, c 1843-5. Based on the famous Chinese Eight Views, Japanese artists designed many sets using the Eight Views of Omi as their starting point. Here, Clearing Weather at Mama [Awazu].

 

Very good impression and colour. Minor trimming (usual, as they were printed two-to-a-sheet), otherwise very good condition. Signed Cho-o-ro Kuniyoshi ga.

 

Status: Available

 

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Attributed to KATSUNO (Fl. c 1807)




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A hosoban kappazuri (stencil) print of the beauty Koichi of the Senkyu brothel/tea house holding a plectrum. Published by Sumiya Kichibei, an Osaka publisher in c 1807. The artist Katsuno is only known by a few stencil prints around this date; some, as here, unsigned, and it may well be the only impression extant.

 

Good impression (they are never fine), good colour. Very good condition. Unsigned.

 

Status: Available

 

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Attributed to KATSUNO (Fl. c 1807)




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A hosoban kappazuri (stencil) print of the beauty Kuruharu (or Yukiharu) of the Naraya brothel/tea house holding a teacup. Published by Kashiwaya Soshichi, a Kyoto publisher in c 1807. He is known to have produced prints for Nagahide as well. The artist Katsuno is only known by a few stencil prints around this date; some, as here, unsigned, and it may well be the only impression extant.

 

Good impression (they are never fine), very good colour and condition. Unsigned.

 

Status: Available

 

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