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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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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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2 vols. complete: Kanjaku tsuizen hanashidori, “The Liberated Birds: A Memorial Book for Kanjaku.” A memorial book for the actor Nakamura Utaemon who died in 1852. He had the literary name of Kanjaku, meaning ”playing with sparrows” and the covers and many illustrations allude to this custom of releasing birds at funerals. Vol. 1: 1st preface , 3pp. giving the biography of Utaemon IV; poem 1p. 3 sheets: calligraphy (in ishizuri), 1p.; illustrations in colour, 5pp. signed on first page Toyokuni (III). Sheets 1-8: 2nd preface, 5pp., remaining pp. text, poems and colour illustrations. Sheets 1-75 with 15 single-page and 62 double-page illustrations in sumi and light colour. Inside back cover: colophon dated Kaei 5 (1852). Vol. 2: 110 sheets of text, poems, and illustrations. 38 single-page and 50 double-page illustrations (many in colour and includes a double-page illustration by Kuniyoshi). Last page, colophon, dated Kaei 5 (1852). Original covers with clouds and sparrows. Some soil and minor damage. One title slip missing and other damaged. Contents extremely good.

 

Status: Available

 




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Katsushika HOKUSAI (1760–1849)




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One volume complete Ehon Suikoden, “A Picture Book of the Suikoden”, published by Kadomaruya Jinsuke, Bunsei 12, 1829 showing 108 Chinese brigands. Some fine designs. Signed Katsushika Zen Hokusai I-itsu fude.


Fine impressions. Original covers lacking title slip. Some slight foxing and minor marks.



Status: Available




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Onishi CHINNEN (1792-1851)




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One volume complete Azuma no teburi, “Customs of the Eastern Capital”. Published Bunsei 12 (1829). Original covers, light blue-grey with silver stencilled decoration. Original title slip (damaged). Inside front cover title Taihei Uzo (the original title). Artist: Chinnen, and publisher Sonando. 25 double page illustrations showing the inhabitants of the capital going about their daily pursuits. Inside back cover: Colophon, dated Bunsei 12 (1829) and publishers Kobayashi Shimbei and Osakaya Gembei. Slight repared wormage and minor marks, but generally a nice copy of a fine shijo book.

 

Status: Available

 




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Kitao MASAYOSHI (1764-1824)




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One volume complete Choju ryakugashiki, “Simplified Forms of Drawing Birds and Flowers.” Published Kwansei 9, 1797, by Suharaya Ichibei. Illustrated by Kuwagata Keisai ( Masayoshi ). These influential books of Masayoshi’s were popular and were reprinted many times.


Fine early copy. Original title slip and lemon-yellow covers ( some wear ). Some thumbing at bottom especially towards front, and other minor marks, otherwise good condition. Unidentified collectors’ seals at end and small annotation on back cover of a previous (?) collector: L. de la Bedollier.



Status: Available




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Yashima GAKUTEI (1786-1868) and Totoya HOKKEI (1780-1850)




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Two vols. kyoka books complete: Ressen retsujo gazoshu, a “Collection of the Portraits of Immortal Men and Women.” Twenty eight portraits of Chinese hermits and twenty one portraits of celebrated women in Japanese history. Being a selection of kyoka presented at the meetimg held at Kawachiya of Yanagibashi Ryogoku in Edo, 1st day of the 9th month, Bunsei 7 ( 1824 ). Published by Shinsenyen. Rare.


Original covers and title slips. Minor marks to covers, otherwise very good condition.



Status: Available




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Utagawa TOYOKUNI (1769-1825)




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One of Toyokuni’s most famous books: 2 volumes bound as one, Yakusha Awase Kagami, “A Mirror of Actors’ Physiognomy.” Published Kyowa 4 (1804) by Bunshundo and Yamadaya Sanshiro. Vol. I, 4pp. preface, undated, 18 single-page half-length portraits of actors below kyoka poems. Vol. II, 15 single-page half-length portraits, followed by single page poem signed Ichikawa Hakuen (Danjuro V), 4pp. postscript, signed Kankoku. Lacking original covers with publisher Toto Banshundo on inside cover of Vol. I. Also lacking 2pp. second postscript by Banshundo and colophon. Very minor soil and three portraits with colour turned, otherwise very fresh impressions. Extremely Rare.

 

Status: Sold

 




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Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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One volume Shuzo suiko meimei den, Shohen, “ Portraits of the Characters in the Suikoden, First Series.” Original embossed orange covers with yellow title slip. Inside front cover title and signature within a western-style surround. Preface 6 pp. including two double-page colour illustrations, last sheet dated Keio 3 ( 1867 ). And 18 numbered pages with 36 illustrations of Suikoden warriors on yellow grounds. Inside back cover advertisements. Published by Odawaraya Yashichi, Edo. In extremely good condition. Superb engraving ( by Egawa Ichigoro ). Presumably a response to the copper plate books and prints being circulated at the time. There is a two volume variant of this book printed in just sumi and blue. However, judging from the impressions in this one volume version with woodgrain showing and blind printing, this must be a very early printing.

 

Status: Sold

 




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[Shiba] Shin nigao-e (Published 1915)




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Five volumes complete: [Shibai] Shin nigao-e. Published in Tokyo Taisho 4 (1915) and illustrated by Natori Shunsen, Yamamura Koka, Torii Kotondo, Ishida Hakutei and others.

 

Volume one: 18.5 x 12.5 cm. Original covers, beige. The abbreviated title: Shin nigao and volume number are printed directly on the cover. On the right is the publication date, June 1, Taisho 4 (1915), and a note that subsequent numbers will be published on the first day of each month. Table of contents. Preface by Kinoshita Sataro. The fourteen colour woodcut portraits are by Natori Shunsen (5), Matsuda Seifu (4), Yamamura Koka (3), Torii Kotondo (1), and Ogawa Heibei (1). Block cutter: Igami Bonkotsu. Printer: Namamura Sanjiro. The text on actors and roles are mainly printed on tissue interleaves. Colophon page, dated June 1, Taisho 4 (1915). Compiler: Egawa Kinpei. Published by Nigao-do.

 

Volume two: 25.2 x 18.7 cm. Covers, light blue. The abbreviated title and volume number are printed directly on the cover. The first actor print is pasted to the cover, credited internally to Natori Shunsen. Front endpaper, table of contents. The forteen woodcut portraits are by Shunsen (4, including the cover), Koka (3), Terazawa Kotaro (2), Isshii Hakutei (2), Matsuda Seifu (2), Heibei (1). Colophon, dated July 1, Taisho 4; otherwise as Vol. one.

 

Volume three: 25.2 x 18.7 cm. Covers, beige. Title and volume number as for Vol. two. The first actor print is pasted to the cover, as above. The fourteen actor portraits are by: Shunsen (5), Seifu (3), Hakutei (3), Koka (2), and Heibei (1). Colophon dated August 1; otherwise, as above.

 

Volume four: 25.2 x 18.5 cm. Covers light blue in the same format as above. The fourteen actor portraits are by: Shunsen (5), Koka (4), Hakutei (2), Seifu (2), Heibei (1). Colophon dated October 1; otherwise, as above. Back cover, an ad for forthcoming special Coronation issue of Shin nigao.

 

Volume five: 25.1 x 18.6 cm. Covers, grey paper embedded with green fibres over stiff boards, bound with green silk tassels. The title, Shin nigao-kinen-go: Tairei Hoshoku gafu, “Shin nigao: Special Coronation Number” is printed directly on the cover. The format is basically the same, but two special sections have been added: five portraits of officials associated with Emperor Taisho’s coronation, and five portraits of geisha from Tokyo and Kyoto. The remaining eleven prints are of actors, for a total of twenty-one colour woodcuts: Shunsen (11), Heibei (3), Seifu (3), Ishizuka Kan (2), Kondo Hiroshi (1), and Koito Gentaro (1). Colophon dated November 1, Taisho 4 (1915), otherwise as above.

 

This set contains the earliest prints by Natori Shunsen and gave the impetus to have the larger actor portraits published. In slipcase. Very good condition.

 

Status: Sold

 




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Takehisa YUMEJI (1884-1934)




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One volume complete Sakura-saku shima : Haru no kawatare. Title page: Within purple borders, the subtitle and Yumeji-saku in reddish brown. Frontispiece: colour woodcut across two pages entitled TUMABIKI, “Finger-plucking” in roman letters, with decorative seal. One page introduction by Yumeji. The remaining 50 pages (unnumbered) with poems by Yumeji and ten double-page and four single-page b/w woodcuts, all dealing with emotions associated with springtime. Colophon dated Meiji 45 (1912), first printing. Artist/author: Takehisa Yumeji. Publisher Kawamoto Kamenosuke. Publishing house Rakuyodo. One page ad for the four books then planned but only this and the following Sakura-saku shima: Mi shiranu sekai were produced. Original pale blue covers with original title slip. In very good condition. Wonderful early designs before becoming overly cloying.

 

Sold together with: Sakura-saku shima: Mi shiranu sekai. Title page: Within black borders, the subtitle and Yumeji-saku in black, flanked by images of two demons, one red, the other green. Frontispiece: colour woodcut across two pages entitled UNKNOWN WORLD in roman letters, with decorative seal. The remaining 46 pages (unnumbered) with poems by Yumeji and ten double-page b/w woodcuts dealing with family relations and images of souls in hell. Colophon dated Meiji 45 (1912), first printing. Artist/author: Takehisa Yumeji. Publisher: Kawamoto Kamenosuke. Publishing house: Rakuyodo. Original yellow covers with title slip. In very good condition.

 

Status: Sold

 




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Ichiryusai HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)




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One volume complete Fujimi hyakuza, the “One Hundred Views of Mount Fuji.” Two prefaces on four pages signed Ryuryusenka and Ryusai (Hiroshige) and dated Ansei 6 (1859). Next 21 sheets full colour illustrations of Mount Fuji. Published by Eirakuya Toshiro.

 

Signed on last sheet Hiroshige hitsu. Light yellow covers with hand-written title slip. Good condition.

 

Status: Sold

 




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Ichiryusai HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)




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One volume complete, Ehon tebikigusa, “A Model Book of Plants.” Published by Iseya Rihei, 1849. Signed on inside of front cover Ichiryusai Hiroshige hitsu with three page preface signed Ryukatei Tanekazu (1807-1858) plus one page introduction by Hiroshige on how he was asked to design a book as a guide to drawing for children. (See Strange, The Colour Prints of Hiroshige, Cassell, 1925, p. 112-114 for a full translation.) Thirty-five pages of flowers, grasses and fish plus two page view of Mt. Fuji and last page signed Ichiryusai. This is the rare first edition: It was republished by Shojuya Shoshichi, lacking the introduction. Original embossed grey covers and blue title slip.

 

Extremely fine impressions. Some slight edge wormage at end, otherwise very good condition.

 

Status: Sold

 




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Teisai HOKUBA (177 -1844)




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One volume complete Kyoka sumidagawa meisho zue, ” Humorous Poems on Famous Views of the Sumida River.” Colophon dated Bunsei 6, 1823, published by Shunsuien. Extremely rare.


Original covers with a printed design of chidori. Original title slip. Very good condition.



Status: Sold




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Ichiryusai HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)




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A copy of Ryakuga Korin-fu Ryusai hyakuza, the One Hundred Abbreviated Drawings by Ryusai [Hiroshige]. 1 vol. complete: 21 sheets; inside front cover title and illustrator Hiroshige (also given on last page). 3pp. preface dated Kaei 4 (1851) and signed Ryukatei Tanekazu and 20 pages, numbered, with illustrations in sumi, blue and pink. Colophon inside back cover with a list of bookshops (?) in Osaka and Edo and publisher Yoshidaya Genpachi. According to Brown (L.N.Brown, Block Printing And Book Illustration In Japan , George Routledge & Sons Ltd. 1924, p. 195) this book was republished as vol. IV of Sohitsu gafu. Original covers, missing title slip. Contents very good with only minor marks.

 

Status: Sold

 




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Hatta KOSHU (1760-1822)




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One volume complete, Koshu gafu, “The Drawing Book of Koshu.” Original covers and title slip: 35 sheets ( numbered ex last sheet ); 5pp. preface dated Bunka 9 ( 1812 ), signed Kamo Suetaka, 30 double-page colour-printed illustrations, 1 p. signature Koshu, seal Fujizane and Koshu, 2pp. closing note, dated Bunka 9, signed Fuminoya Shigetaka; sheets numbered 1/2 advertisements of publisher Yoshida Shimbei, Kyoto. Colophon dated Bunka 9 with publishers Kawachiya Kihei, Osaka and Yoshidaya Shimbei, Kyoto. A fine artist who came under the influence of Okyo. Jack Hillier in The uninhibited brush, Hugh M. Moss ltd, 1974, p. 162, speaks of the Koshu gafu: “This is a perfect exposition of his quite personal style and shows his competence in handling widely varied subject matter.” A two-volume edition without date is known and probably constitutes a second edition ( Brown, p. 100; Gonse III, No. 520 ). Ex collections Hayashi Tadamasa and H.M.Kaempfer. Slight soil and staining. One page with a blue pigment mark and small ink inscription on front cover, otherwise very good condition.


Status: Sold




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Kitao MASAYOSHI (1764-1824)




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One volume complete Sansui ryakuga shiki, “Landscapes in the Cursive Picture Style.” Published by Suwaraya Ichibei, Kansei 12 ( 1800 ). This is the first edition. It was reprinted in 1813. I fine book and one of a series of influential books that he published using abbreviated images with a limited palette. Ex Hayashi collection ( large red seal ). Signed Keisai fude.


A fine copy with original pale blue covers and white title slip.



Status: Sold




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Onishi CHINNEN (1792-1851)




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A highly talented artist, he is considered – with Nanrei – to be the finest exponent of the Maruyama-Shijo style in Edo at this time. Of samurai birth, he initially studied under Nangaku. See elsewhere on this site for two original paintings by Chinnen. One volume complete Sonan gafu, “Album of Sonan” ( a go of Chinnen ). Published 1834. 6 pp. preface signed and dated Tenpo 3 ( 1832 ); 1p. contents; 26 sheets illustrations in colour. Last page colophon with date Tenpo, year of the Dragon 9/1832 and annotation in sumi with seal: Renkado Ichiyo zo, “From the collection of Ichiyo.” Inside back cover date Tenpo 5 1/1834 and publishers Osakaya Gembei and Kobayashi Shimbei of Edo.


Yellow covers with cross-hatched embossing and original title slip. Some slight soil throughout, otherwise a nice copy of Chinnen’s masterpiece.



Status: Sold




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Ki BAITEI (1774-1810)




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One volume complete: Kyuro gafu, “Kyuro’s Picture Album.” ( Kyuro was one of the art-names of Baitei, a Nanga painter in the Buson manner. ) The first edition of this book is in two volumes with haiku, c 1795. However, there is some confusion on the other issues: Mitchell, Biobibliography Of Nanga, Maruyama, Shijo Illustrated Books, pages 402-4, lists three examples: “A” ( 2 vol. 1795 ); “B” ( 2 vol. 1799 ), and “C” ( 1 vol. 1797 ). The example offered here does not tally with either of these having preface of 2 pp. with 64 single-page illustrations plus 2 pp. afterward and colophon dated Kansai 11 ( 1799 ) published by Koto Shorin. There are also examples with 62 pp. of illustrations and some lacking forward and or afterward and colophon. A later edition of 1824 is also known. A famous book with impressive, bold and austere images.


Lacking original covers and title slip and with some offsetting, but generally a nice copy. Ex Bing collection. In chitsu.



Status: Sold




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Katsushika HOKUSAI (1760-1849)




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Three volumes complete: Ehon kyoka yama-mata-yama, “Kyoka: Range Upon Range of Mountains.” The fanciful title is based on the fact that the views illustrated are located around Yama-no-te, the higher ground situated in the north and north-western part of Edo. The pictures accompanied by kyoka poems. Vol.1: 12 sheets, 11 illus.; Vol.2: 10 sheets, 11 illus.; Vol.3, 10 sheets, 10 illus. Kyoka selected by Daigentei Sumikata and Benbenkwan Koryu. This is one of Hokusai’s most admired works. Published 1804 by Tsutaya Jusaburo.


Original dark green embossed covers. Original title slips. A very nice clean copy of this famous book. Some slight smudging of pigments and turning of colour on one or two sheets, but otherwise extremely well retained colour, the elusive blue and purple intact.



Status: Sold




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Aikawa MINWA (? – 1821)




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Korin gashiki, “Drawing Methods of Korin.” One volume complete. Original orange-brown covers with original title slip. Preface dated Bunka 15 ( 1818 ) with 56 pp. of illustrations in light colour. Booksellers: Tsurugaya Kihei ( Osaka ); Kikuya Shichirobei and Kikuya Kihei ( Kyoto ). Ex collections Ulrich Odin, seal bottom right first page ( lot 126, Paris, 1928, ill. pl.V, and Javal ( ref: brocade covered boards ).


Very good impressions. Minor marks with ink smudge on one sheet and two paper repairs on another, otherwise good condition.



Status: Sold




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Nishiyama KAN’EI (1834-1897)




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A very fine and beautiful book: Kan’ei gafu, “Album of Drawings by Kan’ei.” One volume complete with 25 double page illustrations of birds and flowers. Kan’ei ( proper name Nishiyama Kenichiro ) was an Osaka artist and the son and pupil of Nishiyama Hoen. The 2pp. preface, dated Meiji 19 ( 1886 ); 2pp. colophon dated the same and gives the artist’s name Nishiyama Kenichiro; the publisher Maekawa Zembei of Osaka and the printer’s and block cutter’s name. See colour illustration in Jack Hillier, The Art of the Japanese Book, 1987, pl. 188 where he states “……his one book confirms the view, gained from the relatively few kakemono and album drawings, that he possessed greater individuality than most of the Shijo practitioners of the time.” Original brocade covers with original title slip. No two examples of this work are the same: Every copy has different antique brocade boards with the edges deliberately distressed ( presumably to give a wabi-sabi spirit to the work ).


Obviously an expensive work at the time with superb printing on thick paper. Minor defects: Slight damp staining on colophon and slight creasing and pin holes, but generally very good condition.



Status: Sold




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Shibata ZESHIN (1807-1891)




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Two ehon complete with title on red slips: Shibata Zeshin gafu, “Picture Book by Shibata Zeshin, Shohan.” Original stippled yellow covers. Inside page: Ehon yamato nishiki no uchi, Shibata Zeshin sensei gafu. Toto Kikado zo. Twenty designs by Zeshin from the collection of Kikado of Tokyo. This appears to be the first edition and the designs were reprinted many times and some also incorporated into compilations with other contemporary artists. No date. Opening out to 9 x 11.5 in, 22 x 29.5 cms.


All, apart from two, fine early impressions. Fine colour. Slight edge soil on two sheets. Residue glue on fold of last design and slight edge crease on two sheets but otherwise very good condition. Most sheets signed Zeshin.



Status: Sold




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Hishikawa MORONOBU (c 1618–1694)




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A superb and important book by an unrivalled illustrator in depicting street life and views of the Yoshiwara and the theatre. One volume complete, Tsukinami no asobi, “Months in the Eastern [ Edo] Capital.” One page preface and 19 double page illustrations plus one page colophon. Shows the inhabitants of Edo engaged in various activities from pleasure to devotion as well as street markets and daimyo processions. Published by Urokogata-ya of Odenba-cho, Edo, Genroku 4, 4th month, 1691. Beautiful contemporary hand colouring. Ex collection Walter von Scheven, 1878 – 1950, and purchased by him from Karl W. Hiersemann, Leipzig, in 1924. Extremely rare. Listed by Mrs Brown in Block Printing and Book Illustration in Japan, p. 48.


Original salmon pink covers with embossed pattern and original title slip. Minor soil and marks but otherwise extremely good condition for a book of this period.



Status: Sold




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Kawamura BUMPO (1779-1821)




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One volume complete Kimpaen gafu “A Book of Paintings by Kimpaen [ Bumpo ].” Published Bunsei 3, 1820, by Hishiya Magobei. Bumpo’s major book of kacho-e. The better impressions ( as here ) do best justice to what Jack Hillier called the “boneless” technique ( without outline ).


Original covers with an indented mushroom design and title slip. Minor thumbing and other minor marks, otherwise very good condition.



Status: Sold




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Nishimura NANTEI (1775-1834)




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One volume complete Nantei gafu kohen, “A Book of Drawings by Nantei, Second Part.” Also published as Jimbutsu gafu. Published by Bunchodo ( Yoshida Shimbei ), Bunsei 9 ( 1826 ), the preface dated Bunsei 6 ( 1823 ). Fine designs of everyday life in the Kyoto area.


Original light orange covers and brown title slip. Some wear to covers. Slight thumbing to lower corners, otherwise a nice copy.



Status: Sold




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Various SHIJO ARTISTS (Compiler Bunshodo Fuji Mokyo)




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One volume complete Keijo Gaen, “An Album of Pictures by Kyoto Artists.” One of the finest of the Shijo anthologies. Published by Yoshida Shimbei, Bunka 9 ( 1812 ). The colophon dated Bunka 11 ( 1814 ). Twenty-six double-page illustrations by Goshun, Soken, Roshu, Hironari, Toyohiko, Shiba Kokan, Zaimei, Shoin, Toyo, Ozui, Keibun, Gito, Shodo, Hakuei, Gantei, Kokei, Nangaku, Gyokorin, Bummei, Kiho, Kosen, Minwa, Chikudo, Koshu, Geppo and Ozui ( in that order ). There are also copies known with twenty-five illustrations. Ex collection Hayashi ( small red seal ).


Original blue covers with impressed pattern. Original brown title slip. Minor marks and wormage, but generally good condition.



Status: Sold




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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797–1861)




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One volume complete Ichiyu gafu, “Drawings by Ichiyu [Kuniyoshi ].” Sumi and light colour. Some fine designs showing heroes and legends. This is the first edition, dated Bunsei 13 ( 1830 ). It was reissued in 1846.


Original covers and title slip. Minor wormage, otherwise fine condition.



Status: Sold




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Yamaguchi SOKEN (1759–1834)




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Yamato jimbutsu gafu, “An Album of Japanese Figure Drawings.” Three volumes, first series, bound as one, complete. One of the great Maruyama/Shijo ehon showing 105pp of sumizuri-e scenes from daily life in Kyoto. The compositions owe as much to what is left out as what is present with everyday activities imbued with insight and humour. Without first preface ( as is often the case ); second preface dated Kansei 12 ( 1800 ). Colophon signed Yamaguchi Soken and dated Kansei 11 ( 1799 ). Each section starts with a single page showing plum blossom, pine and bamboo. The book was reissued in 1802 and then reprinted together with the second series in 1804. This is an early edition on thin paper. Opaque paper was used in the reprints and a title was added on each illustration.


Original covers and title slip ( ? ), somewhat worn, giving it as one volume. Some minor marks and soil, otherwise good condition.



Status: Sold




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Hosoda EISHI (1756–1829) and Katsushika HOKUSAI (1760–1849)




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One volume complete Nishikizuri onna sanjurokkasen, “The Thirty-Six Women Poets in Brocade Prints” published by Eijudo Nishimuraya Yohachi and dated on last postscript Kansei 9 hinoto mi “Kansei 9 [ 1797 ] mid-Winter” and stating that the calligraphy was written by thirty-six young girls, none over the age of fifteen. Date of publication Spring 1801 ( Kansei 13 kanoto tori haru ). Two prefaces followed by a double-page frontispiece by Hokusai and thirty-six double-page prints with a poetess at left and a poem in shikishi at right decorated with colour patterns. Two postfaces with colophon giving artist as Hosoi Chobunsai, with seals Hosoi and Chobunsai. Rare complete and as Jack Hillier wrote in The Art of the Japanese Book, Sotheby’s, vol. 1, p. 454: “The other book with colour prints by Eishi is one of the major masterpieces of the colour-printer’s art.” Provenance: Ex Hayashi collection ( large and small seals ) and Edmond de Goncourt with an annotation by him at end of second preface where he states that he purchased it from Hayashi in 1888 for 200 francs ( and sold, lot 1499, in Goncourt sale, 10/3/1897, Hotel Drouot, Paris ). There is also a small oval seal with a capital “G” running through the book. This appears to be another collector as it does not tally with Goncourt’s seals.


Old brocade covers and title slip, probably not original. Very fine impressions and colour. Minor backed wormage on preface and colophon, otherwise very good condition.



Status: Sold




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Nakamura HOCHU (Fl. late 18th to early 19th c.)




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The rarest of rare books: Korin gafu, “An Album of Pictures by Korin.” The first of the major Rimpa books and “… must be numbered among the most exceptional picture-books in the world.” ( Hillier, The Art of the Japanese Book, volume two, p. 657.) The illustrations copied by Hochu from Korin. Two volumes incomplete: Missing 4½ pages. Volume one: One double page preface plus 13 double page illustrations; volume two: 7 ½ double page illustrations with one double page postscript plus one double page colophon. This is the extremely rare first edition published by Omiya Yohei, colophon dated Kyowa mizunoe inu no toshi ( Dog year 1802 ). With de-luxe hand-colouring and yellow covers. There are few extant examples and they show considerable variation ( a complete copy being in the Beres collection, Paris ). The book was reprinted in 1826 ( with blue covers and lacking hand-colouring ) and then copied in the late 19th century.


Volume one ( ken ):


One double page preface/ One double page Cranes/Turtles/Plum Tree/6 Immortal poets/ Peonies/2 Taoist immortals/Dandelion and blue flowers/3 puppies/Poets in boat/Hollyhocks/3 rats/7 Sages of the bamboo grove/Fuji ( this illustration normally in volume two ).


Volume two ( kon):


One double page Musicians and No dancer/One half page Noblemen crossing bridge/Chrysanthemum/Morning glory and red flower/Jo and Uba/ 4 Deer/Blind man’s buff/Daikoku and Ebisu/One double page postscript/One double page colophon.


Original yellow covers with title slips. Minor toning, wormage and marks, but generally very good. Ex Biedermann collection ( seal inside slip case and another unidentified seal in slip case and colophon ).



Status: Sold




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Ikeno TAIGA (1723–1776)




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An important shunga book Daito keigo. One volume complete with preface and nine double page illustrations. This actual copy is discussed by Jack Hillier, The Art of the Japanese Book, Sothebys, 1987, volume two, pages 908-909, and illustrations ( from this copy ) nos 606 and 607. The images are thought to be based on Ikeno Taiga’s original paintings. Wonderful broad, almost abstract images using what Jack Hillier called a “dragged brush line.” This actual copy offered here was the earliest that Hillier had traced ( dated 1814 ). Ex Biedermann collection. It was reissued in 1867 with text by Shibata Roshu.


Original covers. Some minor marks, but surprisingly good condition. A sumi drawing inside front cover of a Dutchman with a fish. Biedermann seal.



Status: Sold




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Sakai HOITSU (1761-1828)




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One volume complete of Oson gafu, “The Drawing Book of Oson.” ( This being one of the artist’s names taken from the village Uguisu-mura where he lived in retirement. ) Original yellow covers with karazuri decoration. Dated Hinoe ne ( 1816 ) but an early and very careful reprint of this famous book. Published by Owari Toheki do.


A very nice clean copy with original covers and title slip. In chitsu.



Status: Sold




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Katsushika HOKUSAI (1760-1849)




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Two volumes complete: Toto shokei ichiran ( alternative title: Toto meisho ichiran ), “Fine Views of the Eastern Capital at a Glance.” The first of three important works showing the sights of Edo in colour prints. ( See this website for examples of the other two. ) Published Kansai 12 ( 1800 ) by Suwaraya Mohei, Suwaraya Ihachi and Tsutaya Jusaburo, Edo.


Original hand-painted blue-green covers with original title slips. One or two minor marks, otherwise a nice example with perfect colour. In chitsu.



Status: Sold




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Ki BAITEI (1774-1810)




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One volume complete: Kyuro gafu, “Kyuro’s Picture Album.” ( Kyuro was one of the art-names of Baitei, a Nanga painter in the Buson manner. ) The first edition of this book is in two volumes with haiku, c 1795. However, there is some confusion on the other issues: Mitchell, Biobibliography Of Nanga, Maruyama, Shijo Illustrated Books, pages 402-4, lists three examples: “A” ( 2 vol. 1795 ); “B” ( 2 vol. 1799 ), and “C” ( 1 vol. 1797 ). The example offered here does not tally with either of these having preface of 2 pp. with 64 single-page illustrations plus 2 pp. afterward and colophon dated Kansai 11 ( 1799 ) published by Koto Shorin. There are also examples with 62 pp. of illustrations and some lacking forward and or afterward and colophon. A later edition of 1824 is also known. A famous book with impressive, bold and austere images.


Lacking original covers and title slip and with some offsetting, but generally a nice copy. Ex Bing collection. In chitsu.



Status: Sold




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Katsushika HOKUSAI (1760-1849)




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One volume complete: Shuga ichiran, “Excellent Paintings at a Glance.” One of Hokusai’s most undervalued books but at the same time one of his best documented. ( See Hokusa’s Shuga Ichiran, An annotated description of Hokusai’s Shuga Ichiran by C. Ouwehand, Heinz Kaempfer Fund, 1991. Based on the copy in the National Museum of Ethnology, Leiden. ) Two versions are known: A colour printed edition ( as here, and Leiden ) and a monochrome example with title Denshin gakyo. The book is unusual ( and must have been expensive ) as it is partly printed in gold with mica added. There were a number of later reprints of this book. Published by Hishiya Kyubei, Nagoya and five others, c 1818.


Original dark brown burnished covers. Original title slip ( faded ). Front cover nibbled at edge affecting edge of first two sheets of preface. Other minor marks and soil, but generally a nice copy.



Status: Sold




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Katsushika HOKUSAI (1760-1849)




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One volume complete: Denshin kaishu-ippitsu gafu, “Drawing Manual – Album of Drawing with one Stroke of the Brush.” Similar to the ryakuga style which was pioneered by Masayoshi. One of the best known and most influential of Hokusai’s books and one which was reprinted and copied many times. Published 1823 by Eirakuya Toshiro, Nagoya.


Original burnished orange covers. Original title slip. A nice early example: This is a difficult book to find without the fugitive pigments being completely washed out. This example has been in the collection of four collectors: Jaeger; Kari and the other two unread ( seals inside front cover ).



Status: Sold




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Yashima GAKUTEI (Fl. c 1786-1868)




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One volume complete: Ichiro gafu, “Ichiro’s [ Gakutei’s ] Picture album.” The prints were first issued in a private two volume publication with kyoka poems ( c 1820 ). Published by Gasendo, Edo, 1823.


Original dark brown covers with burnished pattern. Original blue title slip. A nice early copy. This popular book was reprinted many times.



Status: Sold




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Oishi MATORA (1794-1833)




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Two large volumes complete: Soga kokufu, “Sketches of National Customs.” A rare work with wonderful images which Vignier, in Odin, described as “Tirage d’une delicatessen remarquable.” Published by Yoshinoye Nimbei, Kyoto; Tsuruya Kiemon, Edo; Kawachiya Kihei and Kawachiya Kichibei, Osaka, 1828.


Original creped and printed covers with original title slips. Two backed wormholes running through two volumes which do not detract from the lovely compositions, otherwise very good.



Status: Sold




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Katsushika HOKUSAI (1760-1849)




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One volume complete: Hokusai soga, “Hokusai’s Free Sketches.” Two versions of this publication are known: Solely printed in sumi and ( as here ) sumi with gradated shading and a pink block. This version also with the colophon. Both are almost certainly contemporaneous. Contain’s some of Hokusai’s best known images and was considered by Jack Hillier to contain “the finest figure prints by Hokusai.” Published 1820 by Eirakuya, Nagoya; Surawaya Mohei and seven others in Edo.


Original light blue burnished covers. Original title slip. Some slight damage to covers, and thumbing on some pages, but overall a very nice copy with fine impressions.



Status: Sold




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Katsushika HOKUSAI (1760-1849)




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Three volumes complete: Kyoka yama-mata-yama, “Kyoka: Range Upon Range of Mountains.” The fanciful title is based on the fact that the views illustrated are located around Yama-no-te, the higher ground situated in the north and north-western part of Edo. The pictures accompanied by kyoka poems. This is one of Hokusai’s most admired works. Published 1804 by Tsutaya Jusaburo.


Original dark green embossed covers. Original title slips. A very nice clean copy of this famous book. Some slight smudging of pigments and turning of colour on one or two sheets, but otherwise extremely well retained colour, the elusive blue and purple intact.



Status: Sold




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