by Hokkei (1780 - 1850)
Series; Japanese Books Compared
Surimono - Surimono are an exclusive subcategory of Japanese woodblock prints. Poetry clubs commissioned these designs for distribution to a small audience of members, most often as New Year's greetings. These privately published images included a wonderful range of subjects and lavish printing techniques such as embossing, burnishing, and metallic pigments. Since surimono were not sold commercially, the print runs were very small and original Edo era surimono are incredibly rare in the market today. These fine quality suriomono reprints offer a great way to collect these classic designs at an affordable price.
The Chomonju: Snake and Melons Surimono - Fascinating surimono print of a large snake curling around two melons, lifting its head up. The poem inscribed above describes how the snake will grow into a dragon and go into the mountains to raise clouds of white cherry blossoms. The snake is a divine animal thought to provide water and encourage the spring cherry blossom season. The paper lining the tray is delicately embossed, a nice touch.
Woodblock reprints - In the 20th century, artists and publishers collaborated to recreate famous woodblock prints for interested Japanese collectors and Westerners looking for rare designs. New blocks were made, and the prints were painstakingly printed by artisan printers in the same method as the 19th century originals - one block for each color. Woodblock reprints were an opportunity to collect and enjoy a famous design at a small fraction of the price of an original. They still are today.
Artist - Hokkei (1780 - 1850)
Image Size - 8 3/8" x 7"
Condition - This print with good color and detail as shown. Paper remnant on reverse at right edge from previous mounting. Slight toning. Some prints have slight soiling, a few creases, or a few spots. Please see photos for details. Generally in good condition overall.