by Yoshitoshi (1839 - 1892)
Comments - One of Yoshitoshi's most iconic prints, this kakemono or vertical diptych depicts a gruesome scene from the famous story of the hag of the Lonely House on Adachi Moor, an evil woman who preyed on unborn children for their blood. A hideous old crone, she sharpens a large knife against a stone as her helpless victim hangs overhead, suspended upside down by a rope. The pregnant woman is bound and gagged, at the mercy of the wizened hag, who sneers up at her as she crouches on a mat next to a blazing fire, smoke drifting across the shabby room. The setting is dark and moody, with gourd vines framing the vine of the night sky out the window, and cracks and holes in the plaster walls.
Although the subject is notorious, even repugnant, Yoshitoshi has chosen to depict the moments before the evil act, implying the awful violence to come rather than showing it, rendering the scene less bloody than some of his other designs, specifically those for his early series "Twenty-eight Famous Murders with Verse." A nice clean print, finely printed with delicate cloth embossing in the hag's white robe and the title cartouche, and soft bokashi shading in the smoke and background. This incredibly rare Yoshitoshi kakemono is an excellent choice for the serious collector.
Artist - Yoshitoshi (1839 - 1892)
Image Size - 28" x 9 3/8" + margins as shown
Condition - This print with excellent color and detail as shown. Two separate panels, backed with paper. A few tiny spots. Please see photos for details. Nice overall.