Chikubushima Moon

by Yoshitoshi (1839 - 1892)

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Chikubushima Moon  by Yoshitoshi (1839 - 1892)

Original Yoshitoshi (1839 - 1892) Japanese Woodblock Print
Chikubushima Moon

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.

Chikubushima Moon - Fantastic image of Tsunemasa, lord of the Taira clan, deep in prayer at an island shrine. In this story from Tsunemasa's epic life, the young lord prays at the temple for victory over the Minamoto clan. A gibbous moon rises beyond the railing of the shrine, framed by pine branches, and Tsunemasa begins to play the biwa. The goddess of the shrine is so enchanted by Tsunemasa's music, and the young man playing under the silvery moonlight, that she promises him victory against the Minamoto the next day. A great image and a nice choice for someone interested in the fantastic samurai tradition. Includes burnishing in the armor, court cap, and the bearskin he sits on, and embossing in the light gray pants.

Artist - Yoshitoshi (1839 - 1892)

Image Size - 13" x 8 3/4" + margins as shown

Condition - Nice color and printing quality. Backed with paper. Good overall, see photos.

Chikubushima Moon  by Yoshitoshi (1839 - 1892)
Chikubushima Moon  by Yoshitoshi (1839 - 1892)