Utagawa KUNISADA (1786-1864)




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An original hanshita-e (preparatory drawing) for a triptych showing, from the left, the actor Bando Takesaburo I as Nagoya Sanza, Ichimura Uzaemon XIII as the Shinzo (“courtesan’s apprentice”), and Nakamura Fukusuke I as Fuwa Banzaemon. This is actually from the dance Sanpukutsui Kabuki no irodori performed at the Ichimura-za theatre, 5/1855. The publisher was Sanoki. These first drafts by the artist themselves survive because a more detailed drawing was needed by the blockcutter, and this was normally given to an assistant to execute. Or the drawing was never taken up by the publisher, for whatever reason. Sumi and touches of red with some pentimenti. Signed Toyokuni ga on the three sheets. Sold “as is” with all imperfections.

 

 

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Utagawa KUNISADA II (1823-1880)




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A triptych showing Prince Genji in a boat with attendant page and a lady watching female awabi (abalone) divers called ama. These women were a great curiosity for the public and seen as rather risqué characters. Prince Genji was the protagonist of Murasaki Shikibu’s Heian-era novel The Tale of Genji. He was the second son of the emperor, and relegated to civilian life. Published 1865 by Maruya Kyushiro.

 

 

Very good impression and colour. Slight edge soil, otherwise very good condition. Signed Kunisada hitsu.

 

 

Status: Available

 

 

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Kawamura BUMPO (1779-1821)



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I volume complete Bumpo gafu (Sampen), “Album of Drawings by Bumpo” (3rd Series”). Original light grey covers with burnished pattern. Original title slip. Preface 3 pp., with 18 double-page and 32 single-page illustrations in sumi and light colour numbered 1 – 35. Colophon dated Bunka 10 (1813).(First edition.) Signed Bumpo with publishers Kawachiya Kihei and Yoshidaya Shimbei. Fine impressions. Very good condition with no thumbing to corners.

 

 

Status: Available

 

 




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Ohara HOSON (Aka SHOSON, KOSON) (1877-1945)



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A rooster and weasel. Published by Kawaguchi, c. 1930. The first and only edition. Ex Robert O. Muller collection. Rare.

 

 

Very fine impression, colour and condition. Signed Hoson. Copyright seal in lower right margin; seal of printer, Komatsu, and carver, Maeda, in lower left margin.

 

 

Status: Available

 

 

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Hosoda EISHI (1736-1829)




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An original painting, sumi and colour on silk, 33.25 x 12 in; 84.5 x 30.5 cms. Shows a parading oiran, a high class courtesan, beneath falling cherry blossom. A parade was held every April in the Yoshiwara under the spring cherry blossom. Her costume is decorated with a large golden koi swimming amongst water weeds. An elegant and refined painting of great delicacy typical of this painter who was of unusually high rank for an Ukiyo-e artist. His prints – usually of beauties – are equally elegant. He also had a considerable number of pupils, including Eisho, Eiri and Eisui who produced some exceptional compositions. Probably painted around 1795-1804.

 

 

Mount with some minor damage; painted area in very good condition. Signed Chobunsai Eishi hitsu with Eishi seal.

 

 

Status: Available

 

 




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Kawanabe KYOSAI (1831-1889)




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The lion falling in love from a set Kyosai rakuga, “Kyosai’s Drawings for Pleasure.”A satirical take on current events and mores. A design based on Aesop’s Fables which tells of a lion falling in love with a beautiful girl and asking her to marry him. Her bemused parents set a challenge for him: to have his claws removed and teeth filed. He duly submits only to have the parents then laugh and ask him to do his worst. Published 1874 by Sawamuraya Seikichi. A set of 15 prints was planned but only 12 are known.

 

 

Fine impression and colour. Light album backing, otherwise very good condition. Signed Seisai Kyosai.

 

 

Status: Available

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Toyohara KUNICHIKA (1835-1900)




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

 

 

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

 

 

Status: Available

 

 

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Toyohara KUNICHIKA (1835-1900)




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

 

 

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

 

 

Status: Available

 

 

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Nagasawa ROSETSU ( 1754-1799 )




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An original painting showing a white mouse and a spiny lobster on a tray. Rosetsu is considered one of the most important artists of the late Edo period but little is known of his short life ( he died at forty-five ) apart from the fact that he studied, and was one of the top disciples, of Maruyama Okyo. He is labelled an “eccentric” painter as he defies easy classification. His brushwork is a tour de force and he is known for his expressive depictions of animals. The Chinese-style inscription above is by Rosetsu’s friend Minagawa Kien who was a painter and scholar of Confucianism. It implies that the lobster and mouse are both signs of good fortune. Ink and light colour on paper. Image size 44.75 x 11.25 in; 113.75 x 28.5 cms.

 

Signed Rosetsu with seal Gyo. Painted 1790s. Inscription signed and sealed Kyosai. Slight foxing, otherwise in very good condition. One of the most copied painters. See Kono, Exhibition of Nagasawa Rosetsu, Chiba City Art Museum, 2000, pl. 42 for identical seals. Tsuji Nobu, Nagasawa Rosetsu: the Fanciful Painter, Miho Museum, 2011, pls. 19, 58-60, 67,87, 90, 91, 93 and 94.

 

Status: Available




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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: Available

 

 

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Kawanabe KYOSAI (GYOSAI) (1831-1889)




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A draughtsman of great dexterity with a wild, often bizarre, imagination. Loved sake, sometimes painting under its influence. At an early age studied under Kuniyoshi, then Maemura Towa and later Kano Tohaku Chinshin before becoming an independent painter at 27. Was famous for his crow paintings but also loved skeletons. This newly discovered painting shows a full-length skeleton humorously hiding its genital area – not with a fig-leaf – but a large lotus leaf. Sumi and light green on silk, 38.75 x 13 in; 98.5 x 33 cms. Interestingly, a very faint under-drawing can be seen where he first thought of placing the figure.

 

 

Many copies of his work. In very good condition. Signed Seisai Kyosai with bell seal.

 

 

Status: Reserved

 

 




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Tsukioka YOSHITOSHI (1839-1892)




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An original preparatory drawing (hanshita-e) for an unpublished set. Shows a busy street scene with a doctor’s surgery on the right. Probably c early 1870s. Signed on a painter’s palette Ikkaisai Yoshitoshi fude. Two small areas of pentimenti. Sumi on thin Japanese paper, image size 13.5 x 9.25 in; 34.5 x 23.5 cms. In good condition.

 

 

Status: Available

 

 

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Utagawa YOSHIKAZU (Active c 1849-1867)




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A five-sheet original drawing (hanshita-e) showing a parade of beauties before a wicker fence and blossom. Bigyoku imayo hanazoroi, “An Assortment of Modern Beautiful Gems as Flowers.” Nice brushwork on the sumptuous kimonos. Sumi with sumi wash and light touches of red on thin Japanese paper laid onto further thin Japanese paper. Each sheet signed Ichikawa Yoshikazu ga. Sold “as is” with all imperfections, but in good condition.

 

 

Status: Available

 

 

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Utagawa KUNISADA (1786-1864)




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A sheet of original drawings being hanshita-e for an ehon. Shows, above, a seated samurai and a female figure to the right holding a mirror. Below, actors in a garden setting. Sumi with touches of red on thin paper laid onto thicker Japanese paper, 14 x 10 in; 36 x 25 cms. Sold “as is” with all imperfections.

 

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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Oho ( Wang P’ou ) visiting his mother’s tomb to comfort her during a thunderstorm. Shows peasants fleeing the zigzag lightning bolts. From a set of fourteen prints: Nijushi-ko doji kagami, “Mirror of the Twenty-Four Paragons of Filial Piety.” Published by Wakasa-ya Yoichi, c 1840. Each print shows an example of a child’s exemplary behaviour in looking after their aged parents There is a strong western influence in this set. Robinson S13.14.

 

Very good impression and colour. Slight centre fold, otherwise good condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

Status: Available

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Taiso YOSHITOSHI (1839 – 1892)




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Watanabe no Tsuna on horseback in the rain. One of the finest designs from Wakan hyaku monogatari. Published by Daikin, 1865/2.

 

Fine impression and colour. Minor wormage otherwise very good condition. Signed Ikkaisai Yoshitoshi ga.

Status: Available

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Utagawa HIROSHIGE II (1826-1869)




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Gathering iwatake, rock tripe or rock mushrooms in Kii Province. The common name for various edible lichens that grow on cliffs. The gatherers used precarious baskets that were hauled up and down the cliff face to collect them. Kishu Kumano iwatake tori from Shokoku meisho hyakkei. “Hundred Views of Famous Places in the Provinces.” Published by Uoyei 1859-1861 (this being 1860).

 

 

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

 

 

Status: Available

 

 

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BUNSEI (Active c. 1830 -1844)




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A complete set of Eight Views of Xiaoxiang, modern Hunan Province, China. These eight views were taken up by Japanese artists such as Hiroshige and transposed to Japan becoming sets like the Eight Views of Omi, etc. Bunsei was a pupil of Tani Buncho. He seems to have made a speciality of this subject and there is a slightly larger version set of the same subject. Published c. 1830s. Provenance: Ex Hayashi with his seal on most of the designs. Rare complete.

 

 

Very good impressions and colour. Minor edge wormage, othwerwise very good condition. Each signed Bunsei.

 

 

Status: Available

 

 




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Utagawa KUNITERU (Fl. mid-19th c.)




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An original hanshita-e (preparatory drawing) for a triptych showing the ground floor interior of a brothel in the Yoshiwara with courtesans and their assistants. These first drafts by the artist themselves survive because a more detailed drawing was needed by the blockcutter, and this was normally given to an assistant to execute. Or the drawing was never taken up by the publisher, for whatever reason. He was a pupil of Kunisada, originally calling himself Sadashige, and becoming Kuniteru when Kunisada became Toyokuni III. Sumi and touches of red. Extensive pentimenti. Sold “as is” with all imperfections. Signed on two sheets Kuniteru ga.

 

 

Status: Available

 

 

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Utagawa KUNISADA (1786-1864)




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An original hanshita-e (preparatory drawing) for a published diptych showing, on the left, the actor Onoe Kikujiro II as Tatsuhime – in reality Yawata, the younger sister of Kotoda. On the right is Iwai Kumesaburo III as Kudo Kanaishimaru. The play is Matsu icho Tsurukame Soga performed at the Nakamura-ya theatre, 1/1854. The publisher of the print was Sanoki. These first drafts by the artist themselves survive because a more detailed drawing was needed by the blockcutter, and this was normally given to an assistant to execute. Or the drawing was never taken up by the publisher, for whatever reason. Sumi and touches of red. Signed Toyokuni ga on both sheets. Sold “as is” with all imperfections.

 

 

Status: Available

 

 

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Kawabata GYOKUSHO (1842-1913)




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An original painted fan. On one side a bird amongst flowers and the reverse also with flowers. A leading figure in Tokyo art circles and the last great representative of the Shijo school. In exceptional condition with extensive gold leaf. Signed Gyokusho with seals Shibun on both sides.

 

 

Full colour on silk, each panel 39.75 x 25 in; 101 x 63.5 cms. Extremely good condition. Signed Kinzaburo Yoshitoshi ga with blurred seal but reading Go Kaisai. Extremely rare.

 

 

Status: Available

 

 




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Utagawa TOYOKUNI II ( TOYOSHIGE ) (1777-1835)




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A courtesan with a toothpick and playing with a cat compared to the actor Iwai Hanshiro V ( inset in a sake cup top right ). From a series Imayo bijin awase, shinsei sugatami sakazuki, “A Comparison of Modern Beauties – A New Mirror of Sake Cups.” Published by Imariya Ushizo, c 1820-24.

 

Very good impression, colour and condition. Extensive mica added to the coat of the courtesan. Signed Toyokuni ga.

 

Status: Available

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Cho GESSHO (1772-1832)




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A large original painting of moored junks caught in a violent squall. A fine painter who studied under Tanke Gessen and Matsumura Goshun in Kyoto before moving to Nagoya in 1798 and becoming Nagasawa Rosetsu’s assistant for a short time. Also illustrated some fine ehon. Sumi and colour on silk with the currents of air painted in gold; 55.25 x 26 in; 140.25 x 66 cms. Painted c. 1810s. Provenance: Two previous owners’ seals on the exterior of mount: The Honda family library and the Ueno family. Old box with inscription which states that Gessho wanted to acquire a painting from the Owari district. Although not intrinsically valuable it was esteemed by the local people. He offered to exchange the painting offered here for their painting. There is a dig here in that the inhabitants of Owari were known to be avaricious. Written by Mizutani Okurei (1848-1926). Presumably based on the accounts of the two previous family owners.

 

Signed Gessho with seal: Yukisada, Genkei, Gessho. Obviously an important painting by Gessho and in very good condition.

 

Status: Available

 




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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)



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Gempei Yashima o-kassen, the great battle of Yashima in 1184. Shows Yoshitsune’s famous “eight-boat leap” (centre), Noritsune (left), and Benkei on the large boat (right). Published by Kawaguchiya Uhei, c. 1839-41.

 

Very good impression and colour. Edge repair top left sheet, otherwise very good condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

Status: Available

 

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UNSEN




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The dates for Unsen are not known but he was working in the early Meiji period. This original hanshita-e shows Imperial troops defeating the rebellion during the Shimabara riot. (The events took place in 1637/8 although contemporary uniforms and artillery are shown. Comments on topical subjects were often “masked” by being set in a different period.)) A well drawn triptych in good condition using pentimenti. Signed Unsen hitsu.


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Kitagawa TSUKIMARO (Active c 1804-1836)




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An original painting, full colour on dark silk, 33.5 x 11.5 in; 85 x 29 cms. Shows a Chinese beauty – possibly Yang Guikei – collecting medicinal leaves from a Japanese spice bush. An intriguing painting with Ukiyo-e elements fused with both Chinese and Western styles. Tsukimaro was Utamaro’s best pupil and his paintings are rare. Painted c 1818.

 

Some loss of gofun but generally good condition. Newly mounted with new box. Signed Bokutei Tsukimaro hitsu with two unidentified seals.

 

Status: Available

 




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Yamamoto SHOUN (1870-1965)




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A large original painting , full colour with gold on silk, image size 50.5 x 19.75 in; 128.25 x 50 cms. Shows Shoki, the Demon Quellor, with sword drawn watching an oni escaping on a cloud, upper left. Various Chinese legends exist regarding the origins of Shoki but the gist of them all is that Emperor Xuanzong canonized Shoki, a physician, and in gratitude Shoki vowed to protect the ruler and his heirs from demons and illness. Shoun is best known for his series of woodblocks of beautiful women, Ima Sugata, published 1906-9.

 

In fine condition. Signed Shoun hitsu with two seals, one reading Shoun.

 

Status: Available

 




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Attributed to Toyoharu KUNICHIKA (1835-1900)



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An oban diptych shini-e (memorial portrait) of the famous kabuki actor Ichikawa Danjuro VII (1791-1859). Upper right is the date of his burial, Ansei 6 (1859), 3rd month, 24th day. A long inscription at left on his life. The image top right shows his great-great-great grandfather, the first Ichikawa Danjuro (1660-1704). The other image, top left, shows Danjuro VIII (1823-1854), his son, who predeceased him by 4 years. See Waseda University Theatre Museum, acc. Nos. 114-0330 and 114-0332 (attributed to Kunichika).

 

Fine impression and colour. Light album backing, otherwise fine condition.

 

Status: Available

 

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Utagawa KUNISADA (1786-1864)




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A fine original fan painting showing a woman of Ohara; a mountain village north of Kyoto. These Oharame collected brushwood and firewood in the fall to sell in Kyoto. They are often depicted and obviously caused a stir when they entered Kyoto to ply their trade. The custom has evidently been going on since the 12th century. She is shown holding a flower and sitting on her bundle of firewood.

 

 

 

Full colour on prepared paper mounted as a fan, 6.5 x 17in; 16.5 x 43.2 cms (paper area). In very good condition. Signed Kunisada ga with indistinct seals, probably Kuni Sada. A charming painting.

 

 

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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Matsumura KEIBUN (1779-1843)




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A shijo brush drawing of a seabream and a lumpfish (?). One of Kyoto’s leading artists. Noted for his painting from nature. He studied with his older brother Matsumura Goshun as well as Maruyama Okyo. Sumi and light colour on paper, 10 x 14.75 in; 25.4 x 37.4 cms.

 

In good condition. Signed and sealed Keibun.

 

Status: Available

 

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Matsumura KEIBUN (1779-1843)




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A shijo brush drawing of a white horsehead and an acropomatidae (?). One of Kyoto’s leading artists. Noted for his painting from nature. He studied with his older brother Matsumura Goshun as well as Maruyama Okyo. Sumi and light colour on paper, 10.5 x 15 in; 26.7 x 38.1 cms.

 

In good condition. Signed and sealed Keibun.

 

Status: Available

 

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Matsumura KEIBUN (1779-1843)




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A shijo brush drawing of a red seabream. One of Kyoto’s leading artists. Noted for his paintings from nature. He studied with his older brother Matsumura Goshun as well as Maruyama Okyo. Sumi and light colour on paper, 10.5 x 17 in; 26.7 x 43.2 cms.

 

In good condition. Signed and sealed Keibun.

 

Status: Available

 

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Matsumura KEIBUN (1779-1843)




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A shijo brush drawing of a gurnard and a snapper (?). One of Kyoto’s leading artists. Noted for his painting from nature. He studied with his older brother Matsumura Goshun as well as Maruyama Okyo. Sumi and light colour on paper, 10.5 x 17.75 in; 26.7 x 45.1 cms.

 

In good condition. Signed and sealed Keibun.

 

Status: Available

 

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Nishiyama HOEN (1804-1867)




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An original painting showing the oiran Eguchi on a white elephant. The origins of this story seem to go back to a recorded conversation the poet-monk Saigyo (1118-1190) had with a prostitute named Eguchi giving rise to numerous legends. Eguchi is shown as a manifestation of the Budhisattva Fugen whose usual vehicle is a large white elephant. Hoen, one of the best shijo painters of his time, lived in Osaka and was a pupil of Keibun. Full colour on silk, 36.5 x 13 in; 92.7 x 33 cms. Mount showing signs of wear but image in good condition. Signed Hoen with seal (?) – Seisho.

 

Status: Available

 




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Yanagawa SHIGENOBU (1787-1833)




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An original painting by this artist who was the pupil and then son-in-law of Hokusai. He was given the name Yanagawa (from his residence in the Honjo district of Edo) to distinguish him from other Shigenobu artists. A good book illustrator and surimono designer. He designed the first square surimono in Osaka in 1822, inspiring others to follow. His paintings are rare. Shows a portrait of the Japanese scholar and writer Ishikawa Masamochi (1754-1830). The fifth son of Ishikawa Toyonobu, he was a renowned kyoka poet and Gesaku writer (playful, mocking works), including The Magical Carpenter of Japan. An important figure in kyoka/surimono circles. Known as Rokujuen (Yadao no Meshimori). His family crest is seen on his kimono and he sits before a low desk ready to write. A high quality painting, sumi and colour on silk, 29 x 12.5 in.; 73.6 x 31.8 cms. Several small backed wormholes at bottom, otherwise very good condition. Would benefit from being remounted.

 

Signed Shigenobu with seal Yanagawa.

 

Status: Available

 




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Toyohara KUNICHIKA (1835-1900)




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

 

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

 

Status: Available

 

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ANONYMOUS (Late 18th century)




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An Uki-e, “floating picture” painting showing an interior with a puppet performance taking place. A puppeteer manipulates a female puppet in the centre, behind him two gidayu narrators and a shamisen player. A male puppet is being held behind a screen. Ladies behind a screen at right enjoy the drama. In fact, a male individual at the back seems overcome by emotion with a hanky to his face. The architecture is represented using one-point perspective, a style which made its way to Japan in the 1740’s from the West via China. (Interestingly the artist has got the perspective wrong on the screen at right.) This genre of painting – invariably unsigned – always shows interior or semi-interior views with banquets or, as here, puppet performances. Full colour on paper, 17 x 23 in; 43.2 x 58.5 cms. Minor marks, although good condition for this kind of painting.

 

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Tsukioka SETTEI (1710-1786)




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An original painting, sumi and light blue on silk. Image size 38.75 x 14.25 in; 98.4 x 36.2 cms. Shows a carp leaping a waterfall. This was a favourite subject for Japanese artists being a symbol of achievement against adversity. Carp were bred for their colour in Japan and, interestingly, Koi that are returned to the wild revert back to their grey colour. They are known to live for up to a hundred years or more. Settei produced many illustrated books but after around 1765 turned to painting beauties, courtesans and geishas. They are of the utmost refinement – the faces and limbs picked out in red, their costumes with areas of gold, and invariably have the wide lantern-locks (toro-bin) hairstyle. Signed Hogen Tsukioka Sessai jinen rokuju-nana (painted aged sixty-seven, hence 1777). Seal Masanobu no in. In good condition with splashed gofun.

 

Status: Available

 




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Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)




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A tanzaku showing a rooster and hydrangea. Published by Kawaguchi Shozo, c. 1830s. Another impression is illustrated in Four Hundred Ukiyoe Woodblock Prints From The Museum Of Art, Rhode Island School Of Design, 1990, no. 121, p. 54. Hiroshige is best known for his landscapes, but he produced almost as many bird and flower prints.

 

 

Very good impression, colour and condition. Signed Hiroshige hitsu.

 

 

Status: Sold

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