The Kuchi-e Tradition - Kuchi-e prints are woodblock frontispiece illustrations used in the publication of Japanese novels and magazines around the turn of the 20th century. Most kuchi-e prints were illustrations of bijin and continued the tradition of idealized beauties in Japanese art. The subjects, however, have a decidedly Meiji era feel about them and reflect the artistic movement towards more western design. Kuchi-e prints typically have one or two folds because of their use.
Much interest has been generated in the subject since the publication in 2000 of Helen Merritt and Nanako Yamada's book, "Woodblock Kuchi-e Prints: Reflections of Meiji Culture." Kuchi-e prints have become highly sought after and collected by the serious collector.
Comments - Interesting kuchi-e print of a beauty beside a palanquin, leaning forward with a pensive expression as she tugs at her robe. She wears a light blue kimono patterned with cherry blossoms and tied with a black obi decorated with circular motifs. At left, a low railing holds back foliage beneath a tree. Nicely detailed with burnishing on the obi. The first time we've seen this illustration for the novel "Malice."
Artist - Toshikata (1866 - 1908)
Image Size - 8 1/2" x 10 3/4" + right margin as shown
Condition - This print with nice color and detail as shown. Backed with paper. Vertical folds, wrinkling, small stain. Please see photos for details.
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