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 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 - Terrific kuchi-e portrait of a beauty dressed in men's attire for a festival. She pauses next to a building, holding a shakujou or pilgrim's staff adorned with a twist of pink and yellow cloth in one hand and a peony print fan in the other. Her gray outer kimono features a brick pattern, one sleeve pushed down to the waist to reveal a red under robe. A straw hat hangs at her back and a blue and white dotted towel is tied about her shoulders. The parade of festival floats can be seen in the background. A lovely design, beautifully detailed with burnishing on the hair and black kimono collar.
Artist - Takeuchi Keishu (1861 - 1942)
Image Size - 8 1/4" x 11 3/8"
Condition - This print with nice color and detail as shown. Backed with paper. Vertical folds. A few small spots and marks. Please see photos for details.
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