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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.

 

Dealing in fine Japanese prints, paintings and books since 1968.

 

Kikugawa EIZAN (1787-1867)




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A triptych showing courtesans enjoying themselves on a balcony overlooking Tokyo bay. Furyu minami eki shiohi, “Fashionable South Station at Ebb Tide.” In fact, clam digging at low tide which can be seen in the background. This is a play on words as clams had erotic connotations. Shiohigari, “clam gathering” season is March to June with the peak coinciding with Golden Week at the end of April beginning of May. Published by Maruya Jinpachi, c. late 1810s.

 

 

Very fine impression and colour. Impeccable condition. Signed Kikugawa Eizan hitsu.

 

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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Travellers viewing Mount Asama. Usui-toge yori Asama o miru zu, “A View of Mount Asama from Usui Pass.” From Kuniyoshi’s best landscape set. Of the utmost rarity with most extant impressions differing. This and the impression in the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, are similar, without the smoke coming from the cone of Asama (the most active volcano on Honshu). Other impressions are in: The British Museum, 1948, 0410, 0. 108, which has gradation up the left side of the mountain; the Metropolitan Museum of Art, JP 1424, which has gradation down from the summit; and Worcester Art Museum which is similar to the Mets, 1901. 692. Published by Yamaguchiya Tobei, c. 1836.

 

 

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

 

 

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Kitagawa UTAMARO (1753-1806)

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An aiban showing a mother and daughter from a set Tosei fuzoku hakkei, “Eight Views of Manners of Today.” This design probably referring to Mother’s Day. Another from the set is illustrated in Ukiyoe Zuten, no. 13, Utamaro, Kiyoshi Shibui, p. 107. Published by Izumiya Ichibei, c 1803.

 

 

Fine impression and colour. Minor mark au verso at top, otherwise fine condition. Signed Utamaro hitsu.

 

 

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Ishikawa TOYONOBU (1711-1785)




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A very fine original painting, sumi and colour on paper with extensive laquer and a large emossed gold floral pattern on the bijin’s kimono; other areas in gold. Image size 35.25 x 17.75 in; 89.5 x 45 cms. Shows an elegant beauty holding up an haori to slip it over the shoulders of a seated nobleman. There is a great feeling of tenderness between the couple in this beautiful painting. In fact Toyonobu produced a print of this exact subject but showing the actors Nakamura Kiyosaburo I as Okiku and Ichimura Kamezo I as Kosuke, a pair of lovers, who were in the play Fujito nikki in 7/1751. Toyonobu must have liked the design and produced this painting but of just the protagonists. See this link in google
for the published print.

Toyonobu was a pupil of Nishimura Shigenaga and his style is also indebted to Okumura Masanobu. Produced some of the most exquisite kakemono-e, hashira-e and large obans of this period which, when they come onto the market, fetch considerable sums of money. (See, for example, Christies auction, N.Y., 18/9/2002, lot 6, ex Vever collection.) For a fine collection of his work, see The Clarence Buckingham Collection of Japanese Prints. The Primitives, 1955, A.I.C., pp. 199 – 229, nos. 1 – 58. Signed Ishikawa Shuha Toyonobu zu with seals Ishikawa uji and Toyonobu. Illustrated in colour in the exhibition catalogue of the Fuchu Art Museum, Artists of the Three Capitals-Learning About Edo Through Kyoto and Osaka, Kaneko, Nobuhisa, Oto, Yumiko, 2012, No. 67, p. 92. The cataloguing gives the play as Hiyoku no kagamon but this is most likely a dance that served as the finale. Hiyoku can mean “wings abreast” and hiyoku no tori, the “hiyoku birds” were a mythical couple who shared a single pair of wings, i.e. two lovers. In fine condition, especially given the age. Painted c. 1751.

 

 

Status: Available

 

 




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Utagawa KUNITSUGU (1800-1861)




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An original painting, sumi and colour on silk with extensive splashed and applied gofun. Image size 29.25 x 13.25 in; 74.25 x 33.75 cms. A rare pupil of Toyokuni. Another fine painting by him is in the Minneapolis Institute of Art showing Lady Tokiwa fleeing with her children in the snow. Gift of the Clark Center for Japanese Art and Culture, 2013.29.170. Shows an eloping (?) couple standing in heavy snow shielded by his umbrella. Signed Kunitsugu fude. Seal unread. Very good condition.

 

 

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Utagawa KUNISADA (1786-1864)




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Two volumes complete Yakusha sugao natsu no Fuji, “Portraits of Actors Compared to Fuji in the Summer.” (In other words, without white makeup.) Vol. one: Preface signed Santoan Kyozan. Frontispiece illustration showing Mt. Fuji and nine double-page illustrations of actors and their acolytes in a variety of pursuits offstage. Postscript dated Bunsei 11 (1828). Vol: two: Preface by Tsuruya Namboku IV dated 9/1827. Frontispiece illustration showing a washbowl and fan and nine double-page illustrations of actors from Edo, Kyoto and Osaka. Postscript signed Kochoro Utagawa Kunisada ga with seal Gotokan to tekichoku ko and the publishers: Tsuruya Kiemon; Yamamoto Kyubei; Eijudo (Nishimuraya Yohachi); Kansendo (Izumiya Ichibei); Kinrindo (Moriya Jihei). This fascinating book shows actors in and around their residencies. Replaced title slips and covers. Fine impressions and very good colour. Minor marks and thumbing. Rare.

 

 

Status: Available

 

 




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Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)




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A snow scene: Yushima Tenjin sakaue chobo, “Hilltop View, Yushima Tenjin Shrine.” The shrine is dedicated to scholars and is near Ueno Park. From the set Meisho Edo hyakkei, “One Hundred Views of Edo.” The set published by Uoya Eikichi 1856-58 (this being 1856). The set comprises 118 prints by Hiroshige and another by Hiroshige II. However, three prints are dated 10/1858, the month following Hiroshige’s death, and these are thought to be by Hiroshige II as well. They are: Ueno Yamashita, Ichigaya Hachiman and Bikunibashi.

 

 

Fine impression, colour and condition. Signed Hiroshige hitsu.

 

 

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Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)




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A snow scene: Fukagawa kiba, “Fukagawa Timber Yards.” The yards date back and are the result of the Meireki fire of 1657. Large amounts of wood was required for expanding Edo and the wood yards were moved to this area of swampland east of the Sumida River. From the set Meisho Edo hyakkei, “One Hundred Views of Edo.” The set published by Uoya Eikichi 1856-58 (this being 1856). The set comprises 118 prints by Hiroshige and another by Hiroshige II. However, three prints are dated 10/1858, the month following Hiroshige’s death, and these are thought to be by Hiroshige II as well. They are: Ueno Yamashita, Ichigaya Hachiman and Bikunibashi.

 

 

Fine impression, colour and condition. Signed Hiroshige hitsu.

 

 

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Utagawa TOYOKUNI I (1769-1825)




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Shows the actor Onoe Shoroku I as Osakabehime, Princess Osakabe, a phantom who haunted the battlements of Himeji Castle. The character appeared in the play Matazoro Shoroku Osakabe banashi performed at the Ichimura-za Theatre from 22/5/1814. But this is probably a shini-e published the following year as it bears the information that Shoroku was 71 when he died (10/1815). Shoroku was renowned for his ghost roles. Published by Yamaguchiya Tobei who also published an impressive Kunisada vertical diptych of the same subject in 1814.

 

 

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

 

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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The death of the Daimyo Imagawa Yoshimoto (1519-60) by Oda Nobunaga during the battle of Okehazama which was fought at night during an intense downpour and was the culmination of the feud between the Imagawa and Oda clans. The battlefield is now a park and a national historical site. The best design from a set Yobu hakkei, “Military Brilliance of the Eight Views.” Each print relates to the famous Eight Views theme, in this case Narumi yau, “Night Rain at Narumi.” Published by Enshuya Hikobei, 1852.

 

 

Fine impression, colour and condition. Full size with extra paper left and top, which is unusual as these prints are normally trimmed from albums. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

 

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Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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“Flood” from a series Seiu kandankei, “A Barometer of Emotions.” Shows Nakamura Shikan III as Abe Bungo no Kami riding his horse through waves. Published by Okura Magobei 1876-77 (this being 1876). A rare set with some striking designs comparing actors in theatrical roles with meteorological phenomena.

 

 

Fine impression and colour. Slight trimming, otherwise fine condition. Signed Oju Yoshitoshi hitsu.

 

 

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Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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A vertical diptych Seigen daraku no zu showing the priest Seigen of the Kiyomizudera Temple in Kyoto and the beautiful Sakura-hime (Princess Sakura). Several versions of the story exist. In one, Sakura-hime is Seigen’s long-deceased lover reincarnated as a young priest called Shiragiku. In another, Shiragiku is the dead lover reborn as Sakura-hime. The main thrust of the tale is that Seigen’s lust gets the better of him resulting in his removal from the temple. It was the basis of the play Sakura Hime azuma bunsho premiered 3/1817. This is the rare first state of the first edition published by Matsui Eikichi, 1889. It was republished by Hasegawa Tsunejiro in 1889 with the publisher and date in left border and on most impressions a seal at top left reading “Reproduction not allowed.”

 

 

Very fine impression with hand-applied colour to the eyes, teeth and nails with gum overlay to eyes on Seigen. Fine colour. Minor edge wear to right, otherwise fine condition. Ample room for joining. Signed Yoshitoshi.

 

 

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Utagawa YOSHIYUKI (Active 1848-1864)




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A triptych showing one of the great combats of the Gempei wars during the battle of Ichi-no-Tani to the west of Kobe in 1184. In the centre the Taira leader Satsuma no Kami Tadanori holds down the Minamoto Okabe Rokuyata Tadazumi. On the left Gennai Saemon Hidekata and on the right Adachi Saburo Munetaka. Tadanori was a renowned warrior and distinguished poet. Published by To c. 1848.

 

 

Fine impression, colour and condition. Signed Ichireisai Yoshiyuki ga.

 

 

Status: Available

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