Shiro Kasamatsu - Born in Tokyo, Shiro began studying art at a young age with the painter Kaburagi Kiyokata. He completed his first woodblock designs for Watanabe Shozaburo in 1919 after the publisher saw his paintings on exhibit. Shiro designed shin-hanga prints for Watanabe for many years, becoming well known for his romantic landscapes of famous landmarks and his scenes of traditional Japanese life. From 1952 to 1960, he created more than one hundred woodblock designs for the Kyoto publisher Unsodo. He also experimented with sosaku hanga or creative prints starting in the late 1950s, carving and printing his own designs. Shiro is regarded as one of the top shin-hanga woodblock print artists in Japan.
Comments - Attractive view of a beauty performing the traditional Japanese tea ceremony. Kneeling on a mat next to a floor brazier, the woman carefully pours hot water from a ladle into the waiting tea bowl. A whisk and a tea caddy rest on the floor beside her. She wears an intricately patterned purple and white tie-dyed kimono scattered with colorful maple leaves and tied with a red floral obi. The white areas of the kimono are deeply embossed. A wonderful depiction of this time-honored ritual, with a nicely detailed interior setting.
Signed - Shiro, with red "Shiro" artist's seal within image
Publisher - Unsodo, with publisher's seal in left margin, later edition from original blocks
Artist - Shiro Kasamatsu (1898 - 1991)
Image Size - 14 3/8" x 9 1/2" + margins as shown
Condition - Excellent color and detail. Light diagonal crease along upper right.