by Takeuchi Keishu (1847 - 1915)
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 typcially have one or two vertical folds, because of their insertion in a magazine or book as an illustrative print.
Much interest has been generated in the subject since the publication in 2000 of Helen Merritt and Nanako Yamada's groundbreaking book, "Woodblock Kuchi-e Prints: Reflections of Meiji Culture." Kuchi-e prints have become highly sought after and collected by the serious collector.
Comments - Lovely kuchi-e design of a beauty enjoying an afternoon ride in a boat. She trails her hand in the water, her kimono sleeve caught between her teeth to keep it from getting wet. A Western style umbrella rests in the front of the boat, and leafy branches with delicate pink blossoms hang overhead. Includes burnishing on the hair. A charming illustration for the novel "Pledge at the Pond" (Kohan no Chikai), which appeared in Bungei Kurabu magazine. This image appears on page 114 of Helen Merritt and Nanako Yamada's recent book, "Woodblock Kuchi-e Prints: Reflections of Meiji Culture."
Artist - Takeuchi Keishu (1847 - 1915)
Image Size - 8 1/4" x 11 5/8" + top margin as shown
Condition - This print with excellent color and detail as shown. Vertical folds. Creasing, slight toning and soiling. Please see photos for details.
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