by Tomioka Eisen (1864 - 1905)
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 - Handsome kuchi-e design of a young man leaving his home, looking back over his shoulder for one last glance, a warm orange light spilling form the open doorway. He adjusts the Western style hat on his head with one hand, an umbrella in the other. He wears a dark tan and white kimono tied with a blue obi, two parcels wrapped in cloth slung over his shoulder. A full moon glows softly in the night sky above the softly shaded house and trees. A fine composition.
Artist - Tomioka Eisen (1864 - 1905)
Image Size - 8 1/4" x 12"
Condition - This print with excellent detail as shown. Vertical folds. Hole, repaired. Creasing, slight toning and soiling, a few stains. Please see photos for details.
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