Senso-e - Senso-e are prints depicting wars, most often the Sino-Japanese War of 1894 - 1895 and the Russo-Japanese War in 1904 - 1905. Primarily triptychs, these images filled the journalistic need for illustrations of current activities on the battle front, but also acted as propaganda, encouraging support for the wars and fostering patriotism. These prints emphasized the bravery and success of the army and navy, using dramatic designs and bold compositions, with customers eagerly purchasing the latest prints. Some famous Meiji era artists did senso-e, including Kiyochika, Chikanobu, and Gekko. By the time the Russo-Japanese War came around, woodblock prints had fallen out of favor due to competition with photography and lithography, so fewer designs exist from this time period as compared to the Sino-Japanese War.
Comments - Bold image from the Sino-Japanese War of Japanese forces occupying a fortress on Ryuko Island. The soldiers wave their swords and hats triumphantly in the air, and one has mounted an enormous cannon to proudly display the Japanese flag. At right, a soldier stands atop the bodies of two enemies as he cheers their victory, the fallen Chinese stiffening in the snow below. Explosions rock a fortress in the distance, sending up bursts of orange and yellow flames and smoke, while the Japanese fleet can be seen in gray silhouette approaching at upper right. Nicely composed, with fine bokashi shading in the background.
Artist - Kiyochika (1847 - 1915)
Image Size - 14" x 27 7/8" + margins as shown
Condition - This print with excellent color and detail as shown. Three separate panels, backed with somewhat stiff paper. Slight toning, wrinkling at edges, a few creases. Please see photos for details.
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