by Yoshitoshi (1839 - 1892)
100 Aspects of the Moon (Tsuki hyakushi)
One Hundred Aspects of the Moon - Considered his masterwork, Yoshitoshi's series One Hundred Aspects of the Moon features one hundred oban size woodblocks, published between 1885 and 1892. These quiet and reflective prints, beautifully composed and drawn, feature subjects from traditional Japanese and Chinese history and legend, rendered with great sensitivity and emotion. The moon appears in all but a few prints, providing a unifying motif for the series.
Yoshitoshi's innovative designs for the Moon series are often elegantly spare, with simple backgrounds that focus attention on the human figure. He combines the western influences of realism and perspective with qualities from traditional Japanese and Chinese painting, such as the emphasis on calligraphic brushstroke. The figures are carefully drawn with beautiful linework, conveying a real sense of individual character, gesture, and emotion. Special printing techniques such as embossing and burnishing add a sumptuous touch where appropriate, but simple subjects are conveyed in a likewise manner, no less carefully observed.
Prints from the series were released singly or in groups every few months, with the final image completed shortly before Yoshitoshi's death. The series proved tremendously popular, with patrons lining up to purchase the new releases as soon as they became available. Today, One Hundred Aspects of the Moon remains Yoshitoshi's most well-known work, characterized by his artistry, compassion, and sensitivity in portraying the human experience.
Shizu Peak Moon - Terrific image of Toyotomi Hideyoshi, one of Japan's greatest military leaders. Here, Hideyoshi sounds a conch shell to signal the attack of his forces after galloping through the night to rescue a besieged castle. A morning moon is still visible on the horizon, reflected in the water below, and Shizugatake Hill rises in the distance. Hideyoshi wears a fine suit of armor and a striking battle helmet topped with a sunburst crest, and one of his swords is encased in tiger skin. A beautifully composition with wonderful color and fantastic detail on Hideyoshi's armor, including extensive burnishing, plus embossing on the sword hilts. A fantastic design from the 100 Moon series.
Artist - Yoshitoshi (1839 - 1892)
Image Size - 13" x 8 3/4" + margins as shown
Condition - Nice color and printing quality. Backed with paper from previous folio inclusion. Slight soiling, some minor stains in margin. Hole in top margin, repaired. Good overall, see photos.