JapanesePrints-London purchases prints, paintings and books individually or as collections. Richard Kruml also appraises and values collections.

 

Ichiryusai HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)




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A design that hardly needs cataloging as it is one of Hiroshige’s most famous. Shono – Sudden Rain, Shono-hakuu from Tokaido gojusan tsugi no uchi, “The Fifty-three Stations of the Tokaido Road” published by Hoeido, c. 1831-4. Palanquin bearers and farmers are caught in a downpour near the town of Shono in Ise Province. Various changes were tried by the printers over a period of time: Altering the pigments and bokashi to achieve different atmospheric effects. The impression offered here is of the earliest state with beautiful gradation on the bamboo groves. The set proved popular and many impressions were pulled, the blocks and printing gradually deteriorating.

 

Fine impression. Slight loss of the red, otherwise very good colour. Very slight centre fold and slight irregularity in the paper density at top edge, otherwise very good condition. A fine example of this important design. Signed Hiroshige ga.

 

Status: Available

 

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Utagawa TOYOKUNI I (1769-1825)




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Shows Tamagiku of the House of Tama from the extremely rare set of seven prints Bijin nanakomachi, “Beauties of the Seven Komachi” from Toyokuni’s best period ( c.1793-7 ). A parody of the Noh play Sekidera Komachi showing the courtesan writing a letter to her client. To her left is Komachi’s poem about aging. Ono no Komachi, the beautiful ninth century poetess, was inspiration for many prints. Ex Matsuki collection.


Fine impression and colour with extensive embossing. Yellow ground. Full size. Fine condition. Signed Toyokuni ga.


Status: Available

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Ichiryusai HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)




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An important original Hiroshige painting. Sumi and colour on grey silk, 22.5 x 13.75 inches, 57 x 35 cms. An atmospheric scene showing an evening view at Tamegawa. Villagers hurrying home across a bridge to avoid an approaching thunderstorm. Lightning flashing above. This is a well known painting and has been illustrated in a number of books, including Ukiyo-e Art, Number 18, Memorial Exhibition of Hiroshige, The Japan Ukiyo-e Society, 1968, pl.20. Very good condition; fully mounted with double box and ivory ends. Signed Hiroshige fude with Ichiryusai seal. Hiroshige signature c. 1848- 52.


Status: Available




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Watanabe SEITEI (1852-1918)




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A complete set of 12 paintings showing birds and plants representing the months of the year. Seitei ( Shotei ) specialised in kachoga; was famous in this area, and regarded as the leading exponent. Technically brilliant. January shows a dove on a pine tree with pine cones. February depicts narcissus. March is represented by cherry blossom. April is a display of yamabuki, Japanese mountain rose, with bees. May shows a cuckoo with a falling ginkgo leaf. June is wisteria and a butterfly. July has a beetle climbing a leaf on an iris plant. August shows Japanese morning glory, Asagao. September has a grasshopper on an edamame ( soybean ) plant. October appears to be a wild chrysanthemum and beetle. November depicts what is probably a nuthatch climbing down a tree. And December is represented by a snipe. Each painting sumi and colour on silk. Image size 33.8 x 27.4 cms; 13.25 x 10.75 in. Each painting signed and sealed Seitei. Matching mounts. Slight staining on one or two paintings ( primarily July ) otherwise in very good condition. New box but retaining original lid with Seitei signature and seal and inscription Shiki no kacho, “Birds and Flowers of the Four Seasons.” It is rare to find complete sets of such paintings which are usually conceived as handscrolls.



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Katsushika HOKUSAI (1760-1849); Kyokutei BAKIN (1767-1848); Jippensha IKKU (1765-1831)




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An original painting by Hokusai showing the back view of a courtesan. Above are inscriptions by Bakin and Ikku, the two leading writers of the day. ( Bakin is famous for writing Chronicles of the Eight Dog Heroes of the Satomi Clan of Nanso and Ikku for writing the most humorous book in the Japanese language: Shank’s Mare Journey on the Tokaido.) This painting was originally sold at the Tokyo Bijutsu Club, December 3rd, 1928. It is illustrated in Katsushika Hokusai Paintings, Mainich Shimbun, 1975. It is signed Toyo Katsushika Hokusai ga, “Painted by Katsushika Hokusai of Orient” and the seal, Katsushika Hokusai, is the same seal as that used on the pair of hand scrolls, Day and Night, in the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. Colour and sumi on paper, 11.12 x 11.5 in; 28.2 x 29.2 cms. An intriguing old mount and sold with original sales slip from 1928 and a copy of the 1975 catalogue.The inscriptions are in the process of being translated.

 

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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Ichiryusai HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)




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Mount Haruna in snow, Kozuke Province.One of the best designs from Rokuju yoshu meisho zue, “Famous Places in the Sixty-odd Provinces.” The series published by Koshimuraya Heisuke between 7/1853 and 3/1856 (this being 8/1853).

 

Very good impression and colour. Margins trimmed a little, otherwise very good condition. Signed Hiroshige ga.

 

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Ichiryusai HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)




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Sukiya embankment in snow, Toto Sukiya-gashi, from Fuji sanjurokkei, the “Thirty-six Views of Fuji.” The set published by Tsutaya Kichizo, 1858. The rampart on the inner side of the moat of Edo Castle on the right. Figures cross a bridge leading to Sukiya Gate. In the distance the long outer walls of the main residence of the Nabeshima Clan of Saga. Fuji on the horizon.

 

Very good impression, colour and condition. Large margins. Signed Hiroshige ga.

 

Status: Available

 

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Totoya HOKKEI (1780-1850)




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A surimono showing the Japanese Buddhist goddess Benten, as always with her lute, and a monkey and rat holding a scroll showing the short months (2,4,7,9,12) for the Rat year, 1828. Benten (Hindu: Saraswati) originates from India via China. She is also one of the Seven Gods of Good Fortune. A fukujuso plant in a pot to her right. Poems by Ganjotei Shirataka and Tetsujoan Maori.

 

Very fine impression with extensive silver and gold. Signs of mounting au verso, otherwise very good condition. Fine colour. Signed Hokkei.

 

Status: Available

 

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Toyohara KUNICHIKA (1835-1900)




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The actor Suketakaya Takasuke IV as Sakuramaru from a fine set of prints showing actors glimpsed through their dressing room sliding doors, prior to going on stage. Their figures partly silhouetted as are their assistants, here aiding the actor with his sword. From a set Gakuya nikai kage no hyoban, “Popularity of the Upstairs Dressing Room.” The set published by Takagawa Fusajiro, 1883.

 

Fine impression, colour and condition. Full size. Signed Toyohara Kunichika hitsu.

 

Status: Available

 

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Toyohara KUNICHIKA (1835-1900)




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The actor Onoe Kikugoro V as Hisayoshi from a fine set of prints showing actors glimpsed through their dressing room sliding doors, prior to going on stage. Their figures partly silhouetted as are their assistants, here aiding the actor with his costume. From a set Gakuya nikai kage no hyoban, “Popularity of the Upstairs Dressing Room.” The set published by Takagawa Fusajiro, 1883.

 

Fine impression, colour and condition. Full size. Signed Toyohara Kunichika hitsu.

 

Status: Available

 

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Toyohara KUNICHIKA (1835-1900)




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The actor Onoe Taganojo II from a fine set of prints showing actors glimpsed through their dressing room sliding doors, prior to going on stage. Their figures partly silhouetted as are their assistants, here aiding the actor with his headpiece. From a set Gakuya nikai kage no hyoban, “Popularity of the Upstairs Dressing Room.” The set published by Takagawa Fusajiro, 1883.

 

Fine impression, colour and condition. Full size. Signed Toyohara Kunichika hitsu.

 

Status: Available

 

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Toyohara KUNICHIKA (1835-1900)




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The actor Nakamura Shikan IV as Daizen from a fine set of prints showing actors glimpsed through their dressing room sliding doors, prior to going on stage. Their figures partly silhouetted as are their assistants, here aiding the actor with his headpiece. From a set Gakuya nikai kage no hyoban, “Popularity of the Upstairs Dressing Room.” The set published by Takagawa Fusajiro, 1883.

 

Fine impression, colour and condition. Full size. Signed Toyohara Kunichika hitsu.

 

Status: Available

 

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Utagawa KUNISADA (1786-1865)




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A complete setsugekka koban surimono-style set of triptychs: Snow, Moon, Flowers. Each triptych shows actors in the snow (from left: Matsumoto Koshiro V; Iwai Kumesaburo II; Ichikawa Danjuro VII); in moonlight (Iwai Shijaku I; Bando Mitsugoro III; Iwai Hanshiro V); and admiring the spring blossoms ( Onoe Kikugoro III; Segawa Kikunojo V; Seki Sanjuro II). Published by Mikawaya Seiemon (who specialised in these koban surimono-style prints) c 1825. Extremely rare. One other complete set is in the Harvard Art Museum, acquisition numbers 206831; 207183; 207139.


 

Very fine impressions. These are not true surimono, although they are listed in some books and catalogues as such. However, they are printed with the same delicacy with beautiful blind-printing. Fine colour. Small nicks out of the corners, otherwise fine condition. Each sheet signed Oju Kunisada ga.

 

Status: Available




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Ichiryusai HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)




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A Java sparrow on a clematis vine. A sanchogake format (three designs printed on a horizontal sheet and intended to be separated). Published c 1835-9. This is the first edition with the cube-shaped red Hiroshige seal. Two later impressions are in the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, acquisition numbers 21.9590 and 65.1671. Rare.

 

Fine impression and colour. Minor marks, otherwise very good condition. Signed Hiroshige hitsu.

 

Status: Available

 

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Utagawa TOYOKUNI II (1777-1835)




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A beauty standing beside a circular window with wisteria and a swallow, both symbols of spring. From an aizuri-e set Tosei gonin bijo, “Fine Modern Beauties.” Published by Maruya Seijiro, c 1830-5.

 

Very good impression, colour and condition. Signed Gosotei Toyokuni ga.

 

Status: Available

 

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Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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Zennojo, the filial son from Shinano Province, dreams of his father’s crimes and successfully prays for his recovery from illness. From the set Kokoku nijushiko, “The Twenty-four Accomplishments in Imperial Japan.” Published by Tsuda Genshichi, 1881-87 (this being 1887). This is the first edition. It was republished by Matsuki Heikichi with altered signatures and other changes and inferior printing.

 

Very fine impression, colour and condition. Superb gradation and burnishing. Signed Taiso Yoshitoshi ga.

 

Status: Available

 

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Ichiryusai HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)




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Masaki yukibare no zu, “Clear Weather After Snow at Masaki” from a Toto Meisho, “Famous Sights of the Eastern Capital” set published by Kikakudo (Sanoki), the seal in red in right margin c 1832-35. There is confusion over how many prints belong to this series: The original set of twenty-one prints seems to have been extended to fifty-five in c 1839-42. The temple, under a deep layer of snow, is shown on the far shore. In the foreground two figures in yellow straw coats navigate the river.

 

Very fine impression. Fine colour. Later editions have the black seal of Sanoki in right margin. Very slight centre fold and two backed pinholes; trimmed just on the black title slip on right, otherwise fine condition. Signed Hiroshige ga.

 

Status: Available

 

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Ichiryusai HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)




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Returning boats at Yabase, Yabase kihan, from an upright Omi Hakkei set. Published by Uoya Eikichi, 1857.

 

Fine impression and colour. Slight centre fold, otherwise very good condition. Signed Hiroshige ga

 

Status: Available

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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Hatsuhana’s long penance under the Tonozawa waterfall to aid her crippled husband “Hazari” Katsugoro who is intent on revenging his brother’s murder. Hatsuhana dies, Katsugoro is cured and kills his arch enemy near the waterfall. From the set Kenjo reppuden, “Stories of Wise and Virtuous Women.” Published by Ibaya Sensaburo, 1841-2.

 

Fine impression and colour. One backed wormhole top left, otherwise good condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

Status: Available

 

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Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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Kesa Gozen writing her last words before dying for her husband, the palace guard Minamoto Wataru from the set Kokoku nijushiko, “The Twenty-four Accomplishments in Imperial Japan.” Published by Tsuda Genshichi, 1881-87 (this being 1887). This is the first edition. It was republished by Matsuki Heikichi with altered signatures and other changes and inferior printing.

 

Very fine impression, colour and condition. Superb gradation and blind-printing. Signed Taiso Yoshitoshi ga.

 

Status: Available

 

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Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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Torii Suheemon Katsutaka escaping the castle of Okudaira Nobumasa, which is being attacked by Takeda Katsuyori, in order get help from Tokugawa Ieyasu. From the set Kokoku nijushiko, “The Twenty-four Accomplishments in Imperial Japan.” Published by Tsuda Genshichi, 1881-87 (this being 1887). This is the first edition. It was republished by Matsuki Heikichi with altered signatures and other changes and inferior printing.

 

Very fine impression, colour and condition. Superb gradation on the piers with gofun added to the sumi. Signed Taiso Yoshitoshi ga.

 

Status: Available

 

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Toyohara CHIKANOBU (1838-1912)




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A fine set of diptychs showing beauties compared to scenic places in Japan. Meisho bijin awase, “Comparison of Famous Places and True Beauties.” In this instance Sozumegaura in Musashi Province. The unusual backgrounds are printed in blue with touches of pink. The set published by Matsuki Heikichi, 1897-8.

 

Fine impression, color and condition. Signed Yoshu Chikanobu.

 

Status: Available

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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A beauty in sumptuous clothing from a fine set of seventy numbered prints with title: Sankai medetai zu, “Excellences of Mountain and Sea.” The set compares busts of beautiful women with various products and occupations from the provinces of Japan. The inset view here shows woven silk from Bungo Province, Bungo shiborizone. The set published 1852 by Sano-ya Kihei.

 

Superb impression, very fine colour and condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyosh

 

Status: Available

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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A beauty in sumptuous clothing from a fine set of seventy numbered prints with title: Sankai medetai zu, “Excellences of Mountain and Sea.” The set compares busts of beautiful women with various products and occupations from the provinces of Japan. The inset view here shows octopus from Iyo Province, Iyo nagahama no tako. The set published 1852 by Sano-ya Kihei.

 

Superb impression, very fine colour and condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyosh

 

Status: Available

 

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