Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




 Click here to view image full size.

A triptych Akazawa-yama o-sumo showing the most famous sumo match in Japanese history between Kawazu Saburo Sukeyasu and Matano Goro Kagehisa at Akazawa mountain. Also famous as Kawazu used a new sumo hold wrapping a foot around his opponent’s leg and encircling the neck with one arm, a manoeuvre that became known as the Kawazu hold. The event took place in 1176 before Shogun Minamoto Yoritomo where Kawazu defeats the popular bully Matano. Subsequently Kawazu was murdered, quite unrelated to the bout. His sons swear revenge and their story becomes the Soga monogatari. Kawazu is shown here throwing Matano to the ground, the referee to the left. Published 1858 by Maruya Kyushiro. Robinson T353. Provenance: Purchased from me in 1994.


Superb impression and colour. One small thinned area, otherwise very fine condition. Probably the finest impression extant of this famous design. Signed Kuniyoshi ga and Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

Tags: , ,

 

Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




 Click here to view image full size.

Kwaido Maru (Kintoki) seizes Raijin, the Thunder God, with one hand while holding his thunder drums with the other. A thunderbolt falls to earth causing flashes of lightning. A fine and rare set: Honcho musha kagami, “Mirror of Warriors of our Country.” The set published by Tsujioka-ya Bunsuke, 1855. Robinson S87.6.


Fine impression. Slightly trimmed, otherwise very good condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

Tags: , ,

 

Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




 Click here to view image full size.

A triptych showing the famous archer Minamoto no Yorimasa preparing to shoot the monster Nue on the roof of the Shishinden Palace. The story relates how in 1153 the sixteen year old Emperor Konoe was having difficulty sleeping due to the shrieks and scratchings emanating from the palace roof. Guards informed him that a black cloud descended there every night. Yorimasa was called upon to investigate and he brought down the beast – a composite creature, part monkey, badger, tiger, dragon and snake which was duly despatched by his retainer Hironao no Hayata (Tadazumi no Hayata). Subsequently Konoe sleeps soundly and rewards Yorimasa with a fine sword and a court beauty Yorimasa loves. An exceptional design published 1842-3 by Yamashiroya Shinroku. Robinson T112. Provenance: Purchased from me in 1994.


Fine impression, colour and condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

Tags: , ,

 

Ichiryusai HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)




 Click here to view image full size.

A newly discovered painting of a three-clawed Kano-style dragon amongst clouds. Although a subject popular with Japanese artists (and especially Chinese artists where the subject derives from), this appears to be the only such painting by Hiroshige extant. He did, however, produce two prints of the subject – a surimono and a large panel, both of around the same date. The signature indicates a date after 1840 and it was most likely painted for the Dragon Year 1844. Blue and brown ink on paper with extensive splashed ink. Image size 34.5 x 10.5 in; 87.7 x 26.7 cm. The mount uses a ryu-mon (dragon pattern) motif to match the subject. Very good condition. Signed Ichiryusai Hiroshige hitsu with Ichiryusai seal.

 

Status: Sold

 




 Click here to view image full size.




 Click here to view image full size.




 Click here to view image full size.

Tags: , ,

 

Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




 Click here to view image full size.

Hironao no Hayata (Tadazumi no Hayata), Yorimasa’s retainer (see the triptych by Kuniyoshi of the same subject on this update), grappling with the composite beast Nue on the roof of the Shishinden Palace. Forked lightning bounces around him. One of the best designs from Honcho Suikoden goyu happyaku-nin no hitori, “Eight Hundred Heroes of our Country’s Suikoden, One by One.” Published by Kagaya Kichiemon, 1830-31.


Very good impression and colour. Slight trimming, otherwise very good condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

Tags: , ,

 

Isoda KORYUSAI (FL c 1764-1788)




 Click here to view image full size.

A superb original painting, full colour on silk, showing a beauty running in a late snowfall. Cherry blossom above. A leading artist of his time who produced some of the best bijin and kacho prints of the 1770s before concentrating on painting. Image size 40.25 x 14.25 in; 102.5 x 36 cm. Good condition. Painted c 1778. Signed Koryusai ga with seal Masakatsu, no in.

 

Status: Sold

 




 Click here to view image full size.




 Click here to view image full size.




 Click here to view image full size.

Tags: , ,

 

Ichiryusai HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)




 Click here to view image full size.

Tobiuo, flying fish (probably Prognichthys) and ishimochi also called guchi or shiroguchi, white croaker, (probably Argyrosomus argenatus). Together with a single lily. Poem by Toshigaki Maharu. From the second series of ten fish prints published by Yamasho, c1840-42.The first series was issued privately for a poetry group ( probably the Shingyoku Circle ) with judges’ names and extra poems. These prints are of the utmost rarity as probably only enough for the Circle were printed and they never come onto the market. Due to their popularity this first series was published commercially and a second set was commissioned.

Fine, early impression with mica on the flying fish. Fine colour and condition. Full size and no centre fold. Signed Hiroshige ga in blue (which I have never seen).

 

Status: Sold

 

Tags: , ,

 

Ichiryusai HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)




Click here to view image full size.

Fujikawa from the so-called “Upright Tokaido.” One of the two snow scenes from the set. Shows travelers coming and going at the edge of the village. Published by Tsutaya, Hare 7, 1855.

 

 

Very good impression with wood-grain evident in the sky. Very good colour. Trimmed close, otherwise very good condition. Signed Hiroshige ga.

 

 

Status: Sold

 

 

Tags: , ,

 

Utagawa HIROSHIGE II (1826-1869)




Click here to view image full size.

Nikko Shimofuri no taki, “Shimofuri Waterfall in Nikko” from Shokoku meisho hyakkei, the “Hundred Views of Famous Places in the Provinces.” An uncompleted set of 81 prints published by Uoya Eikichi between 1859-1861 (this being 1859).

 

 

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

 

 

Status: Sold

 

 

Tags: , ,

 

Utagawa HIROSHIGE II (1826-1869)




Click here to view image full size.

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: Sold

 

 

Tags: , ,

 

Kikukawa EIZAN (1787-1867)




Click here to view image full size.

A triptych showing a street thronged with people in front of the famous department store Iwaki Masuya, giving a good cross-section of the inhabitants of the city at this time. The store specialised in silk and textiles and was one of the most important in Edo having, at one point, 500 employees in its stores. Hiroshige designed another triptych of this subject in c. 1850.

 

 

Published by Mikawaya Seiemon, c. 1815. Rare.

 

 

Fine impression. Extremely fine fresh colour. Fine condition. Full size. Signed Kikukawa Eizan fude.

 

 

Status: Sold

 

 

Tags: , ,

 

Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)



Click here to view image full size.

A chu-tanzaku print, Natsu, Ryogoku no tsuki, “Summer Moon at Ryogoku Bridge” from a set Shiki Koto meisho, “Famous Views of Edo in the Four Seasons.” Published by Kawaguchiya Shozo, 1834-5.

 

Fine impression, colour and condition. Signed Hiroshige ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

 

Tags: , ,

 

Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)



Click here to view image full size.

Okute from Kisokaido rokujukyutsugi no uchi, “The Sixty-nine Stations of the Kisokaido.” The set of seventy prints was started by Eisen and published by Hoeido in 1835, but in 1837 Hiroshige took over and completed the series with the publisher Iseya Rihei (Kinjudo). Shows woodcutters making their way home as evening approaches.

 

Fine impression: There is a plug of wood next to the last rock on the right. This repair gradually reveals itself and moves out leaving a gap. On the earliest impressions, as here, nothing is discernible. Slight fading of red, otherwise fine colour. Slight centre fold, otherwise fine condition. Signed Hiroshige ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

Tags: , ,

 

Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)



Click here to view image full size.

A triptych, Takanawa tsuki no kei, “Moon at Takanawa” from a set Edo meisho shiki no nagame, “Famous Places of Edo in the Four Seasons.” Shows beauties on the veranda of an inn overlooking the bay. Takanawa was a popular place to visit with views on a clear day of the Boso mountains across Edo Bay. Hiroshige depicted this area many times. Published by Maruya Jimpachi (Enjudo), 1847-8.

 

Very fine impression. Fine colour. Minor trimming, otherwise very good condition. Signed Hiroshige ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

Tags: , ,

 

Utagawa HIROSHIGE II (1826-1869)




Click here to view image full size.

A snow scene showing Muro Harbour in Harima Province, Banshu Muro-tsu shinkei, “Actual View of Muro Harbour Banshu [Harima] Province.” From Shokoku meisho hyakkei, “One Hundred Famous Views in the Various Provinces.” The set published by Uoya Eikichi, 1859-61 (this being 1859). An uncompleted set with only 81 prints known. Beyond the harbour can be seen the Inland Sea, the Seto Inland Sea aka Setouchi.

 

 

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

 

 

Status: Sold

Tags: , ,

 

Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)




Click here to view image full size.

Shoheibashi Seido Kandagawa, “Seido Shrine and Kanda River Seen from Shohei Bridge.” The scene under light rain and is near present day Akihabara. From the set Meisho Edo hyakkei, “One Hundred Views of Edo.” The set published by Uoya Eikichi 1856-58 (this being 1857). 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.

 

 

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

 

 

Status: Sold

Tags: , ,

 

Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)




Click here to view image full size.

Azuma no mori yoru no ame, “Evening Rain at Azuma Shrine.” From a fine and rare early set Edo kinko hakkei, ”Eight Views in the Environs of Edo.” Shows figures walking along a dike beside the Kita Jumagawa. Azuma Shrine is seen amongst trees to the left. This set was first published privately for the Taihaido Poetry Club by the publisher Sanoya Kihei (Kikakudo) c 1837-8. (Similar to Hiroshige’s first set of fish prints.) For obvious reasons examples of these prints are of the utmost rarity. An entire set is in the Baur Collection, Matthi Forrer, 1994, nos. G492 – G499, this being G498. They have the copyright owner’s name in the left border, Taihaido Nomimasu, who was the head of the poetry club. They also have three poems on each design. The commercial edition, as here, has one or two poems and loses the Taihaido name. (Again, similar to the fish series.) These prints, initially not intended for commercial consumption, are more refined with a greater degree of care taken with the cutting of the blocks. Contrary to later sets, figures are small, pigments are subdued and large foreground objects are not in evidence yet. One of Hiroshige’s finest sets. Rare.

 

 

Very fine impression. Fine colour and condition with large margins. Signed Hiroshige ga.

 

 

Status: Sold

Tags: , ,

 

Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)




Click here to view image full size.

Haneda no rakugan, “Descending Geese at Haneda.” From a fine and rare early set Edo kinko hakkei, ”Eight Views in the Environs of Edo.” Planes now descend here. This set was first published privately for the Taihaido Poetry Club by the publisher Sanoya Kihei (Kikakudo) c 1837-8. (Similar to Hiroshige’s first set of fish prints.) For obvious reasons examples of these prints are of the utmost rarity. An entire set is in the Baur Collection, Matthi Forrer, 1994, nos. G492 – G499, this being G492. They have the copyright owner’s name in the left border, Taihaido Nomimasu, who was the head of the poetry club. They also have three poems on each design. The commercial edition, as here, has one or two poems and loses the Taihaido name. (Again, similar to the fish series.) These prints, initially not intended for commercial consumption, are more refined with a greater degree of care taken with the cutting of the blocks. Contrary to later sets, figures are small, pigments are subdued and large foreground objects are not in evidence yet. One of Hiroshige’s finest sets. Rare.

 

 

Very fine impression. Fine colour. Minimal edge soil, otherwise fine condition with large margins. Signed Hiroshige ga.

 

 

Status: Sold

Tags: , ,

 

Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)




Click here to view image full size.

Koganeibashi no sekisho, “Evening Glow at Koganei Bridge.” From a fine and rare early set Edo kinko hakkei, ”Eight Views in the Environs of Edo.” This area was famous for its cherry trees and visitors are seen cherry viewing. It is also where the Tamagawa-josui was made to draw water from the Tama River into Edo. This set was first published privately for the Taihaido Poetry Club by the publisher Sanoya Kihei (Kikakudo) c 1837-8. (Similar to Hiroshige’s first set of fish prints.) For obvious reasons examples of these prints are of the utmost rarity. An entire set is in the Baur Collection, Matthi Forrer, 1994, nos. G492 – G499, this being G495. They have the copyright owner’s name in the left border, Taihaido Nomimasu, who was the head of the poetry club. They also have three poems on each design. The commercial edition, as here, has one or two poems and loses the Taihaido name. (Again, similar to the fish series.) These prints, initially not intended for commercial consumption, are more refined with a greater degree of care taken with the cutting of the blocks. Contrary to later sets, figures are small, pigments are subdued and large foreground objects are not in evidence yet. One of Hiroshige’s finest sets. Rare.

 

 

Very fine impression. Fine colour. Small edge nibble on top border and minimal edge soil, otherwise fine condition with large margins. Signed Hiroshige ga.

 

 

Status: Sold

Tags: , ,

 

Ichiryusai HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)



Click here to view image full size.

A rare ko-tanzaku design, Tsukudajima natsu no kei, “Summer View of Tsukudajima Island.” From a Toto meisho set published by Shogendo, c. 1837-8. Shows a large fishing boat beneath a bursting rocket; Tsukudajima in the background. There is another version of this design with a halo of light falling from the bursting rocket. This impression is so fine, I am surmising this is the earliest state.

 

 

Very fine early impression with strong woodgrain visible. Fine colour and condition. Signed Hiroshige ga.

 

 

Status: Sold

 

 

Tags: , ,

 

Katsushika HOKUSAI (1760-1849)




Click here to view image full size.

A design interpreting a poem by the Lady of Ise (c. 875-c. 938) from an unfinished set Hyakunin isshu uba ga etoki, “The Hundred Poems [By the Hundred Poets] as Told by the Nurse.” Published 1835-36 by Eijudo with 27 prints known and 67 outstanding drawings for the set. Shows a mother and daughter or lady and servant at a window overlooking Naniwa Inlet with rice fields in the distance and men working on the roof of the building they are in.

 

 

Fine early impression with woodgrain showing on the roof. Fine colour. Small nick out of right edge, otherwise fine condition. Signed Zen Hokusai manji.

 

 

Status: Sold

 

 

Tags: , ,

 

Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)




Click here to view image full size.

The great shrine at Izumo, Izumo, taisha hotohoto no zu from Rokujuyoshu meisho zue, “Famous Views in the Sixty-odd Provinces.” The set published by Koshimuraya Heisuke, 1853-6 (this being 1854). Shows a group of three young women bringing offerings to the Shinto shrine. A large cryptomeria tree in the foreground and other figures, trees and a torii in the misty background. The main deity of the shrine is Okuninushi no Okami, patron of good relationships and marriage (which probably accounts for the women’s visit). A beautiful design when well printed.

 

 

Fine early impression: Should have applied bokashi across the foreground area, as here. Fine colour. Slight vertical crease in left margin, otherwise fine condition. Signed Hiroshige hitsu.

 

 

Status: Sold

 

 

Tags: , ,

 

Ichiyusai HIROSHIGE II (1826-1869)




Click here to view image full size.

Suo Iwakuni Kintaibashi, “The Bridge of the Brocade Sash at Iwakuni in Suo Province.” From an uncompleted set: Shokoku meisho hyakkei, “One Hundred Views of the Provinces.” Published by Uoei between 1859 – 1861 (this being 1859). Shows the beautiful five-arch bridge spanning the Nishiki-gawa under heavy snow. The village of Nishikimi in the foreground. The bridge was built in 1673 using massive stone pilings because earlier bridges had been swept away. It was destroyed in 1950 due to a typhoon but rebuilt in 1953. The best print from the set and probably Hiroshige IIs finest design.

 

 

Fine impression of the first edition with mica applied. Fine colour. Minor edge discolouration, otherwise very good condition. Later editions lack the variegated cartouche and the colour-banded publisher’s seal in left margin. Signed Hiroshige ga.

Status: Sold

Tags: , , ,

 

Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)




Click here to view image full size.

Fujikawa from the so-called “Upright Tokaido.” One of the two snow scenes from the set. Shows travellers coming and going at the edge of the village. Published by Tsutaya, Hare 7 (1855).

 

 

Very good impression and colour. Several small blemishes, otherwise very good condition. Signed Hiroshige ga.

 

 

Status: Sold

Tags: , ,

 

Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)



Click here to view image full size.

A snow scene: Meguro taikobashi yuhi no oka, “Drum Bridge and Sunset Hill, Meguro” from Edo meisho hyakkei, “The Hundred Famous Views of Edo.” Shows the valley of the Meguro River with travellers crossing the stone bridge, Yuhi Hill to the left. Stone bridges were uncommon in Edo because of the risk from earthquakes. Published by Uoya Eikichi between Ansei 3 and 5 (1856-58). This design dated Snake 4 (1857).

 

 

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

 

 

Status: Sold

 

 

Tags: , ,

 

Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)



Click here to view image full size.

Suruga Satta no kaijo, “The Sea at Satta, Suruga Province” from Fuji sanjurokkei, “The Thirty-Six Views of Fuji.” The best design from the set published by Koeido (Tsutaya Kichizo), 4/1858. A huge wave breaks on the right releasing a flock of chidori. These birds were supposed to originate from the spume of these waves. Originally, travellers on the Tokaido had to traverse the base of the cliff, to the left. However, in 1655, a pass was cut in the cliff above. Fuji rises above the bay of Kiyomi. A popular design.

 

 

Very good impression and colour. Crease in right hand margin, otherwise very good condition. Signed Hiroshige ga.

 

 

Status: Sold

 

 

Tags: , ,

 

Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)



Click here to view image full size.

Masaki yukibare no zu, “Clear Weather After Snow at Masaki” from a Toto meisho, “Famous Sights of the Eastern Capital” set published by Kikakudo (Sanoki), the seal in red in right margin, c 1832-35. (Late editions have the seal in black.) There is confusion over how many prints belong to this series: The original set of twenty-one prints seems to have been extended to fifty-five in c 1839-42. The temple, under a deep layer of snow, is shown on the far shore. In the foreground two figures in yellow straw coats navigate the river.

 

 

Fine impression, colour and condition. Signed Hiroshige ga.

 

 

Status: Sold

 

 

Tags: , ,

 

Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)



Click here to view image full size.

Asukayama bosetsu, “Evening Snow on Asuka Hill.” From a fine and rare early set Edo kinko hakkei, “Eight Views in the Environs of Edo.” Shows figures struggling through the deep snow. This set was first published privately for the Taihaido Poetry Club by the publisher Sanoya Kihei (Kikakudo) c 1837-8. (Similar to Hiroshige’s first set of fish prints.) For obvious reasons examples of these prints are of the utmost rarity. An entire set is in the Baur Collection, Matthi Forrer, 1994, nos. G492-G499. They have the copyright owner’s name in the left border, Taihaido Nomimasu, who was the head of the poetry club. They also have three poems on each design. The commercial edition, as here, has one or two poems and loses the Taihaido name. (Again, similar to the fish series.) These prints, initially not intended for commercial consumption, are more refined with a greater degree of care taken with the cutting of the blocks. Contrary to later sets, figures are small, pigments are subdued and large foreground objects are not in evidence yet. One of Hiroshige’s finest sets and this is one of his finest designs. Rare.

 

 

Very fine impression. Fine colour and condition with large margins and splashed gofun. Signed Hiroshige ga.

 

 

Status: Sold

 

 

Tags: , ,

 

Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)



Click here to view image full size.

Shibaura no seiran, “Clearing Weather at Shiba Bay.” From a fine and rare early set Edo kinko hakkei, “Eight Views in the Environs of Edo.” Shows boats anchored on the edge of Edo Bay. This set was first published privately for the Taihaido Poetry Club by the publisher Sanoya Kihei (Kikakudo) c 1837-8. (Similar to Hiroshige’s first set of fish prints.) For obvious reasons examples of these prints are of the utmost rarity. An entire set is in the Baur Collection, Matthi Forrer, 1994, nos. G492-G499. They have the copyright owner’s name in the left border, Taihaido Nomimasu, who was the head of the poetry club. They also have three poems on each design. The commercial edition, as here, has one or two poems and loses the Taihaido name. (Again, similar to the fish series.) These prints, initially not intended for commercial consumption, are more refined with a greater degree of care taken with the cutting of the blocks. Contrary to later sets, figures are small, pigments are subdued and large foreground objects are not in evidence yet. One of Hiroshige’s finest sets. Rare.

 

 

Very fine impression. Fine colour and condition with large margins. Signed Hiroshige ga.

 

 

Status: Sold

 

 

Tags: , ,

 

Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)



Click here to view image full size.

Ikegami no bansho, “Evening Bell at Ikegami.” From a fine and rare early set Edo kinko hakkei, “Eight Views in the Environs of Edo.”The otherwise nondescript town is famous for the large temple overlooking it. This was the Ikegami Honmonji, the main temple of the Lotus sect, a branch of Buddhism founded by Nichiren. This set was first published privately for the Taihaido Poetry Club by the publisher Sanoya Kihei (Kikakudo) c 1837-8. (Similar to Hiroshige’s first set of fish prints.) For obvious reasons examples of these prints are of the utmost rarity. An entire set is in the Baur Collection, Matthi Forrer, 1994, nos. G492-G499.They have the copyright owner’s name in the left border, Taihaido Nomimasu, who was the head of the poetry club. They also have three poems on each design. The commercial edition, as here, has one or two poems and loses the Taihaido name. (Again, similar to the fish series.) These prints, initially not intended for commercial consumption, are more refined with a greater degree of care taken with the cutting of the blocks. Contrary to later sets, figures are small, pigments are subdued and large foreground objects are not in evidence yet. One of Hiroshige’s finest sets. Rare.

 

 

Very fine impression. Fine colour and condition with large margins. Signed Hiroshige ga.

 

 

Status: Sold

 

 

Tags: , ,

 

Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)



Click here to view image full size.

Gyotoku no kihan, “Returning Sails at Gyotoku.” From a fine and rare early set Edo kinko hakkei, “Eight Views in the Environs of Edo.” Gyotoku was a prosperous area on the Edogawa and Edo Bay. This set was first published privately for the Taihaido Poetry Club by the publisher Sanoya Kihei (Kikakudo) c 1837-8. (Similar to Hiroshige’s first set of fish prints.) For obvious reasons examples of these prints are of the utmost rarity. An entire set is in the Baur Collection, Matthi Forrer, 1994, nos. G492-G499. They have the copyright owner’s name in the left border, Taihaido Nomimasu, who was the head of the poetry club. They also have three poems on each design. The commercial edition, as here, has one or two poems and loses the Taihaido name. (Again, similar to the fish series.) These prints, initially not intended for commercial consumption, are more refined with a greater degree of care taken with the cutting of the blocks. Contrary to later sets, figures are small, pigments are subdued and large foreground objects are not in evidence yet. One of Hiroshige’s finest sets. Rare.

 

 

Very fine impression. Fine colour and condition with large margins. Signed Hiroshige ga.

 

 

Status: Sold

 

 

Tags: , ,

 

Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)



Click here to view image full size.

Hakone from the “Reisho” Tokaido. So-called because of the titles written in formal script. The best Tokaido set after the Hoeido. Shows travellers holding pine-torches climbing a mountain path at night. The Hakone mountains were one of the most gruelling parts of the Tokaido, but at the same time one of the most relaxing with the hot springs, Lake Ashi and the fine cryptomeria trees. Published by Marusei, c 1851-2. One of the five best designs from the set and probably the masterpiece. The composition and use of kimetsubishi to show the woodgrain in the night sky and mountains makes it one of Hiroshige’s most beautiful prints.

 

 

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

 

 

Status: Sold

 

 

Tags: , ,

 

Yashima GAKUTEI (1786 ?-1868)



Click here to view image full size.

A saling junk caught in stormy seas, driving rain, and under a threatening sky. The masterpiece from a set of six prints issued in album form with title Naniwa meisho, Tempozan shokei ichiran, “A Famous Place in Osaka, Selected Views of Mount Tempo.” Published in Osaka , 1834, by Shioya Kisuke. In the circular cartouche: Osaka Tempozan yudachi no kei, “View of a Storm at Tempozan, Osaka.” Gakutei is best known for his many surimono. He was also a kyoka poet and painter. Unfortunately, he only produced a few landscapes. Other impressions illustrated in Michener, Japanese Prints, no. 198; Mellor sale catalogue, Sotheby, July 1963, pl. XXXI; Grabhorn, Landscape Prints of Old Japan, pl. 30.SC1/344. One of the great 19th century landscapes.

 

 

Fine impression and colour. Slight centre fold (as usual as it was published in folding album form), otherwise very good condition. Signed Gogaku with seal Go.

 

 

Status: Sold

 

 

Tags: , ,

 

Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)



Click here to view image full size.

Haneda no rakugan, “Descending Geese at Haneda.” From a fine and rare early set Edo kinko hakkei, “Eight Views in the Environs of Edo.” Planes now descend here. This set was first published privately for the Taihaido Poetry Club by the publisher Sanoya Kihei (Kikakudo) c 1837-8. (Similar to Hiroshige’s fish prints.) For obvious reasons examples of these prints are of the utmost rarity. An entire set is in the Baur Collection, Matti Forrer, 1994, nos. G492 – G499, this being G492. They have the copyright owner’s name in the left border, Taihaido Nomimasu, who was the head of the poetry club. They also have three poems on each design. The commercial edition, as here, has one or two poems and loses the Taihaido name. (Again, similar to the fish series.) These prints, initially not intended for commercial consumption, are more refined with a greater degree of care taken with the cutting of the blocks. Contrary to later sets, figures are small, pigments are subdued and large foreground objects are not in evidence yet. One of Hiroshige’s finest sets. Rare.

 

Very fine impression. Fine colour. Minimal edge soil, otherwise fine condition with large margins. Signed Hiroshige ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

Tags: , ,

 

Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)



Click here to view image full size.

Fukagawa, Suzaki, juman-tsubo, “The One Hundred Thousand Tsubo Plain, Suzaki, Fukagawa” from Meisho Edo hyakkei, “One Hundred Famous Views of Edo.” The set published by Uoya Eikichi between 1856 and 1859 (this being 1857). An eagle hovers over the snowy coastal plain, Mt Tsukuba and the Chiba mountains in the distance. Collectors at the beginning of the 20th century considered this the pre-eminent design from the set. Since then Ohashi has replaced it.

 

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

 

Status: Sold

 

Tags: , ,

 

Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)




Click here to view image full size.

Sakasai no watashi, “Ferry at Sakasai” from Meisho Edo hyakkei, the “One Hundred Famous Views of Edo.” The set published by Uoya Eikichi between 1856 and 1858, this being 1857. The set shows famous sights, popular annual events, and festivals in and around Edo in the four seasons. Two Chinese egrets are seen flying down to join other egrets on the Nakagawa. The ferry is seen in the background.

 

 

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

 

 

Status: Sold

Tags: , ,

 

Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)




Click here to view image full size.

A snow scene Bizen Yugayama, “Mount Yuga in Bizen [Province].” From a set of 20 prints Sankai mitate sumo, “Mounains and Sea Contending Like Wrestlers.” The title is in a sumo umpire’s fan (a gunbai). There are 10 prints of mountains and 10 prints of harbours. The set was published by Yamadaya in 1858 (except for Etchu Tateyama which was published by Marujin). A beautiful print.

 

 

Fine impression, colour and condition. There is an anomaly here (as sometimes happens in Ukiyo-e): The first edition of this set has a variegated cartouche. However, the impression here is unquestionably the earliest but has only a one-colour cartouche. Signed Hiroshige ga.

 

 

Status: Sold

Tags: , ,

 

Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)




Click here to view image full size.

Kozuke, Harunasan setchu, “Kozuke [Province], Mount Haruna Under Snow.” From a set of 69 prints [Dai Nihon] Rokujuyoshu meisho zue, “Famous Places in the Sixty-odd Provinces [of Japan]” published by Koshihei between 1853 and 1856, this being 1853. A red bridge spans a gorge with precipitous cliffs and a fast flowing river. Fantastic crags point upwards into the sky. In the distance is Mount Haruna – a sleeping volcano.

 

 

Very good impression. Good colour. Trimmed close, otherwise good condtion. Signed Hiroshige ga.

 

 

Status: Sold

Tags: , ,

 

Katsushika HOKUSAI (1760-1849)




Click here to view image full size.

A street scene with travellers, an ox cart and a teahouse at the Okido gate, Takanawa, in Edo bay to the south-east of Edo. This stretch of coast leading to Shinagawa was lined with stalls and restaurants and very popular. The gate – the stone remains of which can be seen on the left and right – was the last travellers passed through on the Tokaido road to Edo. Another impression is in MFA Boston (21.10262, ex Spaulding via Frank Lloyd Wright) and a third in the BM (1937-0710-0-209).

 

 

Fine impression, colour and condition.

 

 

Status: Sold

Tags: , ,

 

Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




Click here to view image full size.

A snow scene showing Nichiren struggling up a snow-covered mountain near Tsukahara on the Island of Sado. The best design from Koso goichidai ryakuza, the “Illustrated Abridged Biography of the Founder.” Nichiren being the founder of the Buddhist Nichiren sect (Nichiren shu – Kuniyoshi being a follower) and indeed the set of ten prints may have been commissioned to mark the 550th anniversary of his death. Published by Iseya Rihei, c. 1831. Like many great landscapes, there exist different states which causes confusion over which is the earliest. The version offered here has the mountain printed in brown. Other impressions keep the mountain white. The other basic difference is that the design is known with and without a horizon line and that there is at least one impression where the un-inked, blind-printed line can be seen in a raked light. It has been asserted that those impressions without are the earliest; however, it seems from this that the sumi block was probably cut initially with the line but the publishers thought that it looked aesthetically better without printing it, and it was subsequently removed. In any case, this is a rare print and most surviving examples appear to be similar in impression. There is a break in the border to the left of the bottom of Kuniyoshi’s signature which could give a guide to the earliest states, but as this is often painted in, it is not reliable. The composition is based on a design in the illustrated book Bumpo sansui gafu by Kawamura Bumpo, published posthumously in 1824.

 

 

Very good impression, colour and condition with splashed gofun. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi hitsu.

 

 

Status: Sold

Tags: , ,