Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1832 – 1892)

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The Heian courtier Fujiwara no Yasumasa playing the flute by moonlight. Based on a
painting Yoshitoshi exhibited at the Exhibition for the Advancement of Painting in the
autumn of 1882. The story relates that while Fujiwara no Yasumasa was playing on Ichihara Moor he was approached by the bandit Kidomaru who intended to kill him. Instead he was overcome by the beauty of the music and gave up his plan. Yoshitoshi’s painting was so well received, the subject was incorporated into a play with Ichikawa Danjuro IX playing Fujiwara no Yasumasa several months after the publication of the print. Published 1883 by Akiyama Buemon. Considered by cogniscenti to be Yoshitoshi’s finest design.

Superb impression of the utmost finesse. This appears to be the only illustrated example with the background clouds wiped from left to right. The “proof” impression in The Philadelphia Museum of Art is annotated “Please print the background colour this way” [ clouds wiped right to left ]. Fine colour. Minimal shaving bottom centre sheet and a slight discoloration on last sheet, otherwise fine condition with extra paper for joining. Signed Oju Taiso Yoshitoshi sha.

Status: Sold

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