Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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The serpent Tamichi attacking his enemies from a set of 51 prints Dai Nippon meisho kagami, “A Mirror of Famous Commanders of Great Japan.” The set was published by Ebisuya Shoshichi (the first 11 prints) and Funazu Chujiro between 1878-1882. Like Abe no Hirafu, Tamichi was involved in the subjugation of the Emishi. He was killed by a poisoned arrow but was reincarnated as a giant snake to finally overcome his enemies. Published by Funazu Chujiro in 1880.

 

 

Fine, early impression with mica on the snake. Fine colour. Light album backing, otherwise fine condition. Signed Oju Yoshitoshi hitsu.

 

 

Status: Sold

 

 

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    Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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    A vertical diptych showing Taira no Koremochi discovering that a princess is, in reality, a demon. Taira Koremochi Togakushiyama kijo taiji no zu. The story relates how, while maple viewing on Mt. Togakushi in Shinano, Taira no Koremochi comes across a princess and her attendants. He joins them eating and drinking and finally falls into a deep sleep. He dreams that the princess is in fact a kijo (a young woman turned into an oni) and that she is intent on killing him. He awakes to see her true appearance reflected in the water of a nearby stream and kills her. Published by Matsui Eikichi, 1887. It was republished later by Hasegawa.

     

     

    Very fine impression and colour. Perfect condition with ample room for joining of two sheets and full margin on left and top – which these designs must have. Signed Oju Yoshitoshi.

     

     

    Status: Sold

     

     

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      Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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      A triptych from a set of ten: Dai Nippon shiryaku zue, “Short Illustrated History of Great Japan.” Each print is in the form of an unrolled makimono. This design shows the third son of the twelfth century Emperor Keiko, Yamato Takeru no mikoto (Wo-usu). His father was constantly sending him on dangerous missions making him suspect that he wished his death. One such journey was to the Emishi in northeast Japan. On complaining about this to his high-priestess aunt, Yamato-hime, she gave him the famous sword Ame no murakumo no hoken to aid him. On his arrival, the ruler of the Emishi lured him onto open grassland which he set on fire. Wo-usu used his sword to cut the grass, evade death, and start new fires to kill his enemy. Published by Kobayashi 1880. A fine design.

       

       

      Fine impression of first edition. Fine colour. Slight album backing, otherwise very good condition. Signed Taiso Yoshitoshi.

       

       

      Status: Sold

       

       

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        Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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        A triptych from a set of ten: Dai Nippon shiryaku zue, “Short Illustrated History of Great Japan.” Each print is in the form of an unrolled makimono. This design shows the twenty-first Emperor Yuryaku-Tenno (457-479) out following his favourite diversion – hunting. The story relates how during 461 on Mount Katsuragi a large boar attacked him. He ordered his aid to shoot it but the man ran away, whereupon the Emperor kicked the boar onto its back and killed it. Published by Tsunashima 1879.

         

         

        Fine impression of first edition. Fine colour. Slight album backing, otherwise very good condition. Signed Taiso Yoshitoshi.

         

         

        Status: Sold

         

         

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          Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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          A triptych from a set of ten: Dai Nippon shiryaku zue, “Short Illustrated History of Great Japan.” Each print is in the form of an unrolled makimono. This design shows the attempted execution of Nichiren during the reign of the ninetieth Emperor Kameyama (1249-1305). Details vary but essentially the attempt was made on the beach at Tatsunokuchi, Kamakura in 9/1271. As the party were passing the shrine of the god Hachiman, Nichiren gave vent to his anger at being unprotected and called on various Buddhist deities. A luminous object shot across the sky and a fierce wind materialized. The soldiers fell to the ground and called off the execution. Published by Morimoto 1879. A fine design.

           

           

          Fine impression of first edition. Fine colour. Slight album backing, otherwise very good condition. Signed Taiso Yoshitoshi.

           

           

          Status: Sold

           

           

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            Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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            A triptych from a set of ten: Dai Nippon shiryaku zue, “Short Illustrated History of Great Japan.” Each print is in the form of an unrolled makimono. This design shows the great battle of Dannoura in the Shimonoseki Strait off the southern tip of Honshu on April 25th, 1185. The engagement took place in the reign of the Emperor Antoku (who drowned in the battle, 1178-1185). The protagonists were the Minamoto clan (Genji) led by Minamoto no Yoshitsune and the Taira clan (Heike). The episode shown here is where Yoshitsune escapes the Heike general Noto no kami Noritsune by making the eight-boat leap. Published by Morimoto 1880.

             

             

            Fine impression of first edition. Fine colour. Slight album backing, otherwise very good condition. Signed Taiso Yoshitoshi.

             

             

            Status: Sold

             

             

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              Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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              A triptych from a set Buyu setsugekka, “Heroes for the Snow, Moon and Flowers,” this being Gojo no tsuki, “Moon Over Gojo [Bridge].” Published by Isaya Kanekichi c 1867. A popular subject for artists it tells of the battle between the young Yoshitsune and the warrior monk Benkei who had secured the bridge and fought each samurai wanting to cross in order to steal their sword. The 1000th was Yoshitsune who defeats Benkei and secures his loyalty for the ensuing years. Yoshitsune was taught martial arts by tengu in the forests outside Kyoto as a child and they are seen here aiding and abetting him in his duel.

               

               

              Fine impression, colour and condition. Full size with added mica at top. Signed Ikkaisai Yoshitoshi hitsu.

               

               

              Status: Sold

               

               

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                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: Sold

                 

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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: Sold

                   

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                    Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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                    A diptych showing the Buddhist priest Dainin about to kill the girl Umegae. Daininbo Umegae o satsugai no zu, “Picture of the Priest Dainin Killing the Girl Umegae.” From a set of prints Shinsen azuma nishiki-e, “New Selection of Eastern Brocade Pictures.” The priest momentarily looks up at a passing cuckoo. The set published by Tsunashima Kamekichi between 1885 and 1889, this being 1886.

                     

                     

                    Very fine impression of the first edition. Fine colour and condition. Signed Yoshitoshi.

                     

                     

                    Status: Sold

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                      Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)



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                      A vertical triptych showing Taira no Kiyomori (1118-1181) watching Akugenta Yoshihira (“Wicked Genta of Kamakura”) (1140-1160) become the Thunder God and strike Namba no Jiro (1141-1160) down with a thunderbolt. An exceptional design of a subject that produced some excellent interpretations by Kuniyoshi and his pupils. Kiyomori nyudo Nunobiki no taki yuran Akugenta Yoshihira no rei Namba Jiro o utsu. The story originates from the Heiji Monogatari and relates how Minamoto no Yoshihira was defeated in the Heiji Rebellion of 1160 and decapitated by Namba no Saburo Tsunefusa, a retainer of Taira no Kiyomori. He pledges to return and kill Namba with a thunderbolt which he succeeds in doing in 1168 at the Nunobiki Waterfall. There is an alternative version of events that gives the decapitation and subsequent revenge killing as all taking place at the Nunobiki Waterfall. Published by Kinkyo (Omiya Kyujiro) in 1868. Of the utmost rarity: There might have been impressions circulating privately, but I have never seen an example for sale since I started dealing: Perhaps few impressions were printed, but the vertical triptych format is not conducive to it surviving intact. Another impression is in the MET, acc. no. 2007.49.307a-c. Possibly Yoshitoshi’s masterpiece.

                       

                      Fine impression and colour. Some slight trimming. Oxidation and minor horizontal crease at bottom of centre sheet evident au verso, but otherwise in very good condition. Signed Tsukioka Yoshitoshi hitsu.

                       

                      Status: Sold

                       

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                        Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)



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                        Shows Wakashima Gonemon diving into a whirlpool in an attempt to fasten a rope to the old dragon-headed temple bell and haul it up from the bed of the Sumida River. The story relates how the Dragon King thwarted his attempt by cutting the rope. From a set Azuma nishiki Ukiyo Kodan, “Rough Tales of the Floating World Told on Eastern Brocades.” Kodan (traditional storytelling) raconteurs narrated Japanese folk stories, sometimes accompanying themselves with wooden blocks clapped together or a fan giving rhythm. Having been popular from around 1700 (and known as Koshaku), these performances gained renewed popularity in the 1850s with the classic standards augmented by contemporary stories of heroes and vigilantes. Here, the storyteller Hogyusha Torin, narrates a story by Kanagaki Robun, the text seen in the open book top left. The best design from the set. Published by seven different publishers (here: Masudaya Ginjiro) between 1867-1868 (here: 1867).

                         

                        Fine impression, colour and condition. Signed Ikkaisai Yoshitoshi hitsu.

                         

                        Status: Sold

                         

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                          Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)



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                          The ronin Okuda Sadaemon Fujiwara Yukitaka ( number 42 ) from Seichu gishinden, “Tales of True Loyalty.” From a rare uncompleted set of the 47 Ronin published 6/1868 by Masudaya. Thirteen designs extant. It has been suggested that the set was completed but that the others are not known based on the fact that two of the prints are numbered 3 and 46. An error as artists did not commence and progress from number 1. Artists chose at random which numbers from a set to start with. Well known examples being Hiroshige’s Tokaido and Kisokaido.

                          Very good impression and colour. Light album backing. Signed Ikkaisai Yoshitoshi hitsu.

                          Status: Sold

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                            Taiso YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)



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                            Uesugi Kenshin Nyudo Terutora riding into battle. From the fine set Yoshitoshi mushaburui, “Yoshitoshi’s Courageous Warriors.” Published by Kobayashi, 1883-1886 (this being 1883).

                             

                            Fine impression and colour. Light toning, otherwise fine condition. This is the first edition. There are a number of later states and the set was republished by Tsunajima in 1886.

                             

                            Status: Sold

                             

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                              Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)



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                              A triptych showing Yamauba on the left and Kintaro about to wield a large axe to break a large Kaga mimochi, mirror rice cake. This is a traditional Shinto rite in January. January 11th is also the day the wealthy opened their storehouses to air their precious possessions (Kurabiraki). Published by Akiyama Buemon 1891.

                              Very fine impression with extensive burnishing. Fine colour and condition. Signed Yoshitoshi.

                              Status: Sold

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                                Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)



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                                Haso no tsuki, “Moon Through a Crumbling Window” from the set Tsuki hyakushi, the “Hundred Phases of the Moon.” The set published between 1885 and 1892 (this being 1886) by Akiyama Buemon. Shows Bodhidharma (Jap: Daruma), founder of Zen Buddhism, meditating in a cave for nine years after being refused entry to the Shaolin Monastery. He cut off his eyelids in anger after falling asleep two years into the meditation, and tea plants grew where they fell.

                                 

                                Fine impression with strong woodgrain showing in the sky and wall. The set was popular and many editions were printed and many late impressions exist. Great care was taken with the cutting of the blocks on this set and only early impressions do them justice. Fine colour and condition. An impression that has not been in an album. Full margins. Signed Yoshitoshi.

                                 

                                Status: Sold

                                 

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                                  Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)



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                                  Faith in the Third-day Moon from the set Tsuki hyakushi, the “Hundred Phases of the Moon.” The set published between 1885 and 1892 (this being 1886) by Akiyama Buemon. Shows the standing figure of the samurai Yamanaka Shikanosuke Yukimori. The moon appears both as a half crescent on his helmet, and also on his kamayari, “sickle spear.” The crescent moon was considered a lucky emblem (mikazuki) and Yukimori believed it would bring him good luck in battle

                                   

                                  Very fine impression of the earliest printing with beautiful gradation around the figure – often missing on late editions. The set was popular and many editions were printed and many late impressions exist. Great care was taken with the cutting of the blocks on this set and only early impressions do them justice. Fine colour. Light backing and slight trimming at left, otherwise fine condition. Signed Yoshitoshi.

                                   

                                  Status: Sold

                                   

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                                    Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)



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                                    Saito no Oniwakamuru from the set Ikkai zuihitsu, “A Miscellany by Ikkai.” (This being an early name of Yoshitoshi’s.) The young Saito Musashibo Benkei was given the moniker Oniwakamuru “Devil Child” because of his feats of strength and general behaviour. The episode depicted here, which was a popular theme for artists, shows the young Oniwakamaru battling a giant carp at the Bishamon Waterfall, where he has gone looking for his mother, Ohaya. On killing the carp, he discovers it has eaten his mother. A set published by Masadaya Heikichi, 1872-3 (this being 1872). Even amongst Yoshitoshi’s best work, this is an outstanding design.

                                     

                                    Very fine impression of the first edition. Fine colour and condition. Signed Ikkaisai Yoshitoshi hitsu.

                                     

                                    Status: Sold

                                     

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                                      Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)



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                                      Shows the famous Heron Maiden. There are different versions of this story but the most common tells how a young man finds an injured heron. He nurses it back to health and releases it. Some time later a beautiful young woman appears in his village. He falls in love and they marry. She makes fine brocade which they sell, but she does not allow him to see her making it. Tempted , he secretly views her only to discover she is the heron. This is the end of their marriage and the heron flies away. From the set Shingata sanjurokkaisen, “New Forms of Thirty-six Ghosts,” subtitle: Sagi-musume. The set published by Sasaki between 1889-1892 (this being 1889). This is the first edition.

                                       

                                      Very fine impression, colour and condition. Signed Yoshitoshi.

                                       

                                      Status: Sold

                                       

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                                        Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)



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                                        Musashino no tsuki, “The Moon on Musashi Plain” from the set Tsuki hyakushi, the “Hundred Phases of the Moon.” The set published between 1885 and 1892 (this being 1892) by Akiyama Buemon. One of the three best designs from the set and one that relies most on the printer’s art – using extensive bokashi. The fox was capable of transmogrifying into human form and vice versa and was popular in Japanese folklore.

                                         

                                        Very fine impression with beautiful gradation of the earliest printings on the grasses around the fox. (See Beauty & Violence, 1992, 54.97, p. 75 for an example of the more prosaic later printing.) The set was popular and many editions were printed and many late impressions exist. Great care was taken with the cutting of the blocks on this set and only early impressions do them justice. Fine colour and condition. An impression that has not been in an album. Full margins. Signed Yoshitoshi.

                                         

                                        Status: Sold

                                         

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                                          Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)



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                                          A fox priest from the set Tsuki hyakushi, the “Hundred Phases of the Moon.” The set published between 1885 and 1892 (this being 1886) by Akiyama Buemon. Based on the Kyogen farce Konkai, “A Foxe’s Cry” which tells of a hunter who is lectured on trapping foxes by his uncle, a priest. On his way home his uncle turns into his true form, a fox, and is snared in a trap. Yoshitoshi’s design shows the uncle transmogrifying into a fox. One of the best designs from the set.

                                           

                                          Fine impression and colour from an early printing. The set was popular and many editions were printed and many late impressions exist. Great care was taken with the cutting of the blocks on this set and only early impressions do them justice. Fine colour and condition. An impression that has not been in an album. Full margins. Signed Yoshitoshi.

                                           

                                          Status: Sold

                                           

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                                            Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)



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                                            A triptych Gikeiki Gojobashi no zu, “Gojo Bridge in the Chronicles of Yoshitsune.” Shows Musashi-bo Benkei of herculean strength subdued by the young Onzoshi Ushiwaka Maru (Yoshitsune) on Gojo Bridge.The story relates how Benkei (1155-1189) wandered around Kyoto with the intention of relieving 1000 samurai of their swords. One night, with one more sword to go, he saw Yoshitsune playing a flute and wearing a golden sword at the Gojotenjin Shrine. They agreed to fight on Gojo Bridge in southern Kyoto. However, Yoshitsune was too agile for Benkei and had been educated in the secrets of fighting by the tengu. Following Yoshitsune’s victory Benkei became Yoshitsune’s retainer. Published by Morimoto Junzaburo, 1881. One of Yoshitoshi’s best designs.

                                             

                                            Very good impression and colour. Later editions lack the black outline around the moon and have clouds added. (Interestingly, a feature usually found on the earliest states of prints, but in this case the reverse.) Very good condition. Signed Taiso Yoshitoshi ga.

                                             

                                            Status: Sold

                                             

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                                              Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)



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                                              A triptych showing the Japanese Buddhist deity Fudo Myo-o, one of the five “Kings of Wisdom,” above the novitiate priest Yuten Shonin (1637-1718) about to consume the sword of wisdom thereby gaining supernatural wisdom and enlightenment. (Often miscatalogued as threatening him.) On the right is the goddess of mercy, Kannon. The scene is set in the Zojoji Temple where Shonin goes on to become the Abbot. Published by Akiyama Buemon, 1885.

                                               

                                              Fine impression with the publisher’s details intact in the left border of last sheet – often trimmed off. Fine colour and condition. Signed Yoshitoshi.

                                               

                                              Status: Sold

                                               

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                                                Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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                                                Tamiya Boutaro from a set Kokoku nijushiko, “The Twenty-four Accomplishments in Imperial Japan.” Shows the spirit of the tengu helping Tamiya Boutaro Munechika avenge his father’s death. The set published by Tsuda Genshichi 1881-87 (this being 1881).

                                                 

                                                 

                                                Fine impression: This is the first edition. It was republished by Matsuki Heikichi with altered signatures and other changes and inferior printing. Fine colour and condition. Signed Oju Yoshitoshi ga.

                                                 

                                                 

                                                Status: Sold

                                                 

                                                 

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                                                  Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)



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                                                  A vertical diptych Shunkan sozu Kikaigashima ni oite tamatama Yasuyori no shamen sembo kito no zu. Shows Shunkan watching a boat sail away from Kikai Island with his pardoned compatriots. Shunkan, the abbot of the Zen temple Hoshoji in Kyoto, was exiled to the barren island of Kikaigashima together with two confederates in 1177 for conspiring against Taira no Kiyomori. The following year Kiyomori pardons political prisoners but omits Shunkan. He is seen here beseeching the boat with his two conspirators to return. Published by Matsui 1886.

                                                   

                                                  Fine impression of first state. Fine colour with splashed gofun and blind-printing. Fine condition with ample room for joining the two sheets. Signed Yoshitoshi.

                                                   

                                                  Status: Sold

                                                   

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                                                    Taiso YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)



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                                                    Kobayakawa Takakage debating with the tengu on mount Hiko from Shinkei sanjurokkaisen, “New Forms of Thirty-six Ghosts.”The set published by Sasaki Toyokichi, 1889-1892 (this being 1892).

                                                    Very fine first edition. Fine colour and condition. Signed Yoshitoshi.

                                                    Status: Sold

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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.

                                                      Status: Sold

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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.

                                                         

                                                         

                                                        Status: Sold

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                                                          Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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                                                          A triptych showing Raiko and his four companions conquering the demon of Oe Mountain. Raiko shitenno Oeyama kijin taiji. The story relates how the demon (Shuten-doji) kidnappes young girls and keeps them captive in his lair on Mt. Oe near Kyoto. The great warrior Minamoto no Yorimitsu (Raiko) and four retainers seek out the demon. They inebriate him and cut off his head. However, the beast’s head still takes a bite at Raiko who avoids death by wearing the additional helmets of his followers. Published by Kiya, 1864. An early and very fine design.

                                                           

                                                           

                                                          Fine impression and colour with lovely partial oxidation. Slight trimming, otherwise very good condition. Signed Ikkaisai Yoshitoshi ga.

                                                           

                                                           

                                                          Status: Sold

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                                                            New Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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                                                            A triptych , Shinyo rokkaisen, “Six New Monsters” showing Taira no Kiyomori (1118-1181) and his lover on the engawa of the palace confronted by a multitude of snow covered skulls and skeletons in the garden. Towards the end of his life, Kiyomori, the head of the Taira Clan, was obsessed with and hallucinated that his vanquished enemies – on his quest for power and authority – had come back for retribution. Published by Funazu, 1882.

                                                             

                                                             

                                                            Very fine impression. Fine colour. Sheets attached, otherwise fine condition. Signed Oju Yoshitoshi ga.

                                                             

                                                             

                                                            Status: Sold

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                                                              Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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                                                              Abe no Hirafu fighting a giant bear in the snow from a set of 51 prints Dai Nippon meisho kagami, “A Mirror of Famous Commanders of Great Japan.” The set was published by Ebisuya Shoshichi (the first 11 prints) and Funazu Chujiro between 1878-1882. Hirafu was a general for the Empress Saimei. On his return from a mission to the Emishi in northeastern Japan, where he signed a peace agreement , he presented the Empress with two live bears and seventy bear hides. Published by Funazu Chujiro in 1880.

                                                               

                                                               

                                                              Fine, early impression with splashed gofun (only on the earliest states). Fine colour. Light album backing, otherwise fine condition. Signed Oju Yoshitoshi hitsu.

                                                               

                                                               

                                                              Status: Sold

                                                               

                                                               

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                                                                Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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                                                                Yatsunada attacking Saohime’s brother’s castle from a set of 51 prints Dai Nippon meisho kagami, “A Mirror of Famous Commanders of Great Japan.” The set was published by Ebisuya Shoshichi (the first 11 prints) and Funazu Chujiro between 1878-1882. Saohime had conspired with her elder brother Saohikoto to murder the emperor but she abandoned their plan at the last moment. She is seen escaping the conflagration. Published by Funazu Chujiro in 1880.

                                                                 

                                                                 

                                                                Fine, early impression. Fine colour. Light album backing, otherwise fine condition. Signed Oju Yoshitoshi hitsu.

                                                                 

                                                                 

                                                                Status: Sold

                                                                 

                                                                 

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                                                                  Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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                                                                  The best design from the set Tsuki hyakushi, the “Hundred Phases of the Moon.” The set published between 1885 and 1892 (this being 1886) by Akiyama Buemon. Benkei against a full moon. In 1185 Yoshitsune, attacked by his half-brother Minamoto no Yoritomo, was forced to flee to northern Japan by ship. Sailing along the Inland Sea off the coast of Harima Province not far from Kyoto, the ship was struck by a storm in Daimotsu Bay caused by the vengeful ghosts of the Taira warriors Yoshitsune and his men had slain. Benkei pacified the spirits in the prow of the boat by holding up his string of prayer beads.

                                                                   

                                                                   

                                                                  Fine impression. (A good guide to the quality of impression is to look at the outline of Benkei’s face: This fine line started to break down early on. The set was popular and many editions were printed and many late impressions exist. Great care was taken with the cutting of the blocks on this set and only early impressions do them justice. There should be subtle gradation in the sky and the title cartouche has hardly any colour.) Fine colour and condition. An impression that has not been in an album. Full margins. Signed Yoshitoshi.

                                                                   

                                                                   

                                                                  Status: Sold

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                                                                    Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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                                                                    The Monkey King: One of the best designs from the set Tsuki hyakushi, the “Hundred Phases of the Moon.” The set published between 1885 and 1892 (this being 1886) by Akiyama Buemon. Based on the Chinese fable, the Monkey King achieved immortality by stealing peaches from the Garden of Immortal Peaches. He is seen with his fighting stave and the Jade Hare that lived on the moon and was constantly pounding herbs for immortals.

                                                                     

                                                                     

                                                                    Fine impression from a very early edition. The set was popular and many editions were printed and many late impressions exist. . Great care was taken with the cutting of the blocks on this set and only early impressions do them justice. Fine colour and condition. An impression that has not been in an album. Full margins. Signed Yoshitoshi.

                                                                     

                                                                     

                                                                    Status: Sold

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                                                                      Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)



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                                                                      A design from the set Azuma no nishiki ukiyo kodan, “Tales of the Floating World on Eastern Brocade.” Kodan (traditional storytelling) raconteurs narrated Japanese folk stories, sometimes accompanying themselves with wooden blocks clapped together or a fan giving rhythm. The Kodan text is shown above. Having been popular from around 1700 (and known as Koshaku), these performances gained renewed popularity in the 1850s with the classic standards augmented by contemporary stories of heroes and villains. Shows Lady Masao from Osasahara surrounded by curling snakes who force her to reveal her true identity – the Fox Spirit. Various publishers from 1867-68, here Omiya Kyojiro, 11/1867.

                                                                      Fine impression. Very good colour. Slight trimming, otherwise very good condtion. Signed Ikkaisai Yoshitoshi hitsu.

                                                                      Status: Sold

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                                                                        Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)



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                                                                        A design from the set Azuma no nishiki ukiyo kodan, “Tales of the Floating World on Eastern Brocade.” Kodan (traditional storytelling) raconteurs narrated Japanese folk stories, sometimes accompanying themselves with wooden blocks clapped together or a fan giving rhythm. The Kodan text is shown above. Having been popular from around 1700 (and known as Koshaku), these performances gained renewed popularity in the 1850s with the classic standards augmented by contemporary stories of heroes and villains. Shows Mukokizu Yosa stabbing Komori Yasu (Yasu the Bat); so-called because of the bat-like birthmark on his cheek. A gruesome scene with Yasu covered in blood. Various publishers from 1867-68, here Omiya Kyojiro, 11/1867.

                                                                        Fine impression. Very good colour. Slight trimming, otherwise very good condtion. Signed Ikkaisai Yoshitoshi hitsu.

                                                                        Status: Sold

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                                                                          Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)



                                                                          Click here to view image full size.

                                                                          A design from the set Azuma no nishiki ukiyo kodan, “Tales of the Floating World on Eastern Brocade.” Kodan (traditional storytelling) raconteurs narrated Japanese folk stories, sometimes accompanying themselves with wooden blocks clapped together or a fan giving rhythm. The Kodan text is shown above. Having been popular from around 1700 (and known as Koshaku), these performances gained renewed popularity in the 1850s with the classic standards augmented by contemporary stories of heroes and villains. Shows Azekura Jushiro slashing Hinotama no Sangoro who is covered in blood. Various publishers from 1867-68, here Sanoya Tomigoro, 9/1867.

                                                                          Fine impression. Very good colour. Slight trimming, otherwise very good condtion.

                                                                          Status: Sold

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                                                                            Taiso YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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                                                                            Shows Abe no Hirafu, a governor of Koshi, killing a giant bear in heavy snow. From a set: Dai Nippon meisho kagami, “Mirror of Famous Leaders of Great Japan.” Published by Funazu Chujiro, 1880.

                                                                             

                                                                             

                                                                            Fine impression, colour and condition. Signed Oju Yoshitoshi hitsu.

                                                                             

                                                                             

                                                                            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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                                                                                Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)



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                                                                                An original painting showing what is probably the most famous encounter in Japanese mythology: The scene is evening on Gojo Bridge in Kyoto where the twenty year old Benkei ambushes samurai to steal their swords. He is shown approaching the flute-playing Yoshitsune. A fight ensues which Yoshitsune wins due to his leaping ability taught to him by the mountain tengu. Yoshitsune pardons Benkei and they become loyal friends. This painting, in shades of sumi, beautifully evokes the crepuscular gloom. On silk, 7 x 9.5 in; 17.75 x 24.1 cms. Painted c late 1870s. Signed Yoshitoshi with Taiso seal.

                                                                                Status: Sold




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