Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)



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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

 

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Torii KIYOMITSU (1735-1785)



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An hosoban showing two female travellers and their man-servant crossing a river beside a waterwheel, a giant sun on the horizon, the ancient symbol of Japan. Very few prints show waterwheels, the best known being Hokusa’s waterwheel at Onden from the 36 Views of Fuji set. They were in use until the 1880s and, apart from being used for irrigation, they were also employed to run grain mills to polish rice for making sake and threshing machines. Published by Yamashiro han c. 1759. Benizuri-e, with beni, green and blue (turned). Apparently unrecorded.

 

Fine impression. Very good colour and condition. Signed Torii Kiyomitsu hitsu.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa HIROSHIGE II (1826-1869)




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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

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Yashima GAKUTEI (1786?-1868)



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Osaka Ajigawa niiyama fukei, “View of the Aji River and the New Mountain in Osaka” from a set of six prints Naniwa meisho Tenpozan hajimari no zu, “Fine Views of Mount Tenpo at a Glance.” The mountain (more a hill) and park was created by dredging the Aji River. Shows a sailboat approaching the mouth of the river, Tenpozan to the right. In the distance can be seen Osaka Castle and to the right the Shitennoji pagoda. Published by Shioya Kisuke, c.1834.

 

Fine impression and colour. Slight vertical fold as per usual as the set was published in album form. Fine condition. Signed Gakutei.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)



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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.

 

Fine impression, colour and condition. A nice early impression. Signed Hiroshige ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)



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Atago shita Yabukoji, “Bamboo Lane Below Atago Hill” from Meisho Edo hyakkei, “One Hundred Famous Views of Edo.” The set published by Uoya Eikichi between 1856 and 1859 (this being 1857). A snow scene showing figures beside a stream, Atago Hill was to the right and lay just outside the northeast corner of the mansion of the daimyo of Minakuchi. It was the highest natural point in Edo.

 

Superb impression of the extremely rare first edition. Very fine colour. Left corner margin expertly restored, otherwise fine condition. Large margins. Signed Hiroshige ga.

 

Status: Sold

 

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Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)




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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

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Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)




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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

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Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)




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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

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Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)




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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

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Ichiryusai HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)



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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

 

 

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Katsushika HOKUSAI (1760-1849)




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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

 

 

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Utagawa KUNITORA (Active early 19th c.)




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An aiban yoko-e print from an extremely rare and fine set of prints published 1810s by Yamasho. Kunitora’s finest set. Hira bosetsu, “Evening Snow at Mount Hira” from a set Omi hakkei, “Eight Views of Omi.” The set employs strong Western elements with hatching and sinuous hills and houses. Four designs from the set are illustrated in The Western-Style Colour-Prints In Japan, Usaburo Toyama, 1936, nos. 180-183 (this design being 182). A wonderful design.

 

 

Fine impression, colour and condition. Oxidation on the title label. Signed Kunitora ga.

 

 

Status: Sold

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Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)




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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

 

 

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Ichiyusai HIROSHIGE II (1826-1869)




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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

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Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)




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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

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Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)



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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

 

 

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Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)



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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

 

 

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Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)



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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

 

 

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Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)



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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

 

 

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Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)



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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

 

 

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Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)



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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

 

 

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Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)



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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

 

 

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Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)



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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

 

 

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Yashima GAKUTEI (1786 ?-1868)



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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

 

 

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Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)



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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

 

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Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)



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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

 

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Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)




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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

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Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)




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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.

 

 

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Utagawa HIROSHIGE II (1826-1869)



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Mino Ochiai-bashi. Mino (Noshu) Province from the “Hundred Views of Famous Places in the Provinces.” An uncompleted set of 81 prints published by Uoya Eikichi between 1859 – 1861 (this being 1861). An evening rain scene with figures making their way across the torrential Chitose River, famous for its fishing.

 

 

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

 

 

Status: Sold

 

 

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Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)




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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

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Katsushika HOKUSAI (1760-1849)




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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

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)




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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.

 

 

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Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)



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Kii Wakanoura, “Waka Bay in Kii [Province}.” From a set of 69 prints [Dai Nihon] Rokujuyoshi meisho zue, “Famous Places in the Sixty-odd Provinces [of Japan]” published by Koshihei between 1853 and 1856, this being 1855. Shows cranes taking off from the bay.

 

Very fine impression and colour. Light album backing, otherwise fine condition. Signed Hiroshige ga.

 

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Utagawa HIROSHIGE (1797-1858)



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Shinano, Sarashina tagoto no tsuki Kyodaisan, “The Moon Reflected in the Sarashina Paddy-fields, Mt. Kyodai, Shinano [Province}.” From a set of 69 prints [Dai Nihon] Rokujuyoshi meisho zue, “Famous Places in the Sixty-odd Provinces [of Japan]” published by Koshihei between 1853 and 1856, this being 1853. It was a popular outing to view the multiple images of the moon reflected in the pools.

 

Very fine impression and colour. Light album backing, otherwise fine condition. Signed Hiroshige ga.

 

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Utagawa HIROSHIGE II (1826-1869)



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Akasaka kiribatake uchi yukei, “Evening View of the Paulownia Plantation at Akasaka under rain.” From the set Meisho Edo hyakkei, “One Hundred Views of Edo.” The set published by Uoya Eikichi 1856-58 (this being 1859: a replacement print for Hiroshige’s for which the blocks were probably damaged).

 

Very good impression with mica sprinkled across the top. Very good colour. Trimmed close at bottom, otherwise very good condition. Signed Nisei “second” Hiroshige ga.

 

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Utagawa HIROSHIGE II (1826-1869)



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The Dragon’s Maw Mountain, Bizen Province, Bizen tatsu-no-kuchiyama from an unfinished set Shokoku meisho hyakkei, “One Hundred Views of Famous Places in the Provinces” published by Uoya Eikichi between 1859 and 1861 (this being 1861). Shows a lone figure battling a heavy rainstorm in a steep-sided canyon.

 

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

 

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Shotei HOKUJU (1763-1825)




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Shimosa Choshi no ura katsuo tsuribune, “Fishing for Bonito in Choshi Bay in Shimosa Province.” Hokuju, a pupil of Hokusai, produced a number of these fine “westernized” landscapes designed with stylised clouds, cubistic mountains and shadows cast by figures. This is one of the best. Bonito is a favourite fish in Japan where it is in the markets from around May each year. Choshin Bay has always produced the largest seafood catch in Japan. Hokuju produced a substantial body of work in this vein. However, he was not the only one. Okyo, Toyoharu, Hokusai, Kunitora, Kuninao and Shinsai also designed prints in this genre, as well as other artists producing examples. Interestingly, Hiroshige, the pre-eminent landscape artist, designed nothing like this. Indeed, the influences flowed the other way before too long, Hiroshige being a favourite of the Impressionists. This is the rare first edition published by Eijudo, c. 1820. His landscapes were republished by Yamamoto. Rare.

 

 

Fine impression and colour. Very good condition. Full size. Signed Shotei Hokuju ga.

 

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)



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Aigo Gozayemon Hisamitsu (Haigo Gozaemon Hisamitsu) mounted and armoured (less helmet) in battle levelling his long spear. He was a retainer of the Oda family and served under Shibata Katsuiye. From the set Taiheiki yeiyuden, “Heroic Stories of the Taiheiki. A history of the wars of the loyalist Nitta and Kusunoki families against the Ashikaga war-lords during the second quarter of the fourteenth century. But in fact the subject of this set of fifty prints (this design numbered 43) is the civil war of the late 16th century. Censorship restrictions imposed in the 1840s prevented publishers from illustrating historical subjects from the Tensho era 1573-92 onwards, so the publishers circumvented this by slightly altering the names of the historical figures. Published 1848-9 by Yamamoto-ya Heikichi. Robinson S62.1. One of the best designs from the set.

Very fine impression. Fine colour and condition. Signed Ichiyusai Kuniyoshi ga.

 

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Utagawa KUNIYOSHI (1797-1861)



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Negoro- no Komizucha (Negoro-no Komizucha) dressed as a warrior-monk fighting with a long nail-studded club (a tetsubo) and a broken naginata. Swords and arrows fly about him.. From the set Taiheiki yeiyuden, “Heroic Stories of the Taiheiki. A history of the wars of the loyalist Nitta and Kusunoki families against the Ashikaga war-lords during the second quarter of the fourteenth century. But in fact the subject of this set of fifty prints (this design numbered 26) is the civil war of the late 16th century. Censorship restrictions imposed in the 1840s prevented publishers from illustrating historical subjects from the Tensho era 1573-92 onwards, so the publishers circumvented this by slightly altering the names of the historical figures. Published 1848-9 by Yamamoto-ya Heikichi. Robinson S62.26. One of the best designs from the set.

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

 

Status: Sold

 

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