Konjikido, Chusonji

by Hasui (1883 - 1957)

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Konjikido, Chusonji by Hasui (1883 - 1957)

Original Hasui (1883 - 1957) Japanese Woodblock Print
Konjikido, Chusonji

Kawase Hasui (1883 - 1957) - Born in Tokyo in 1883, this great master of the twentieth-century shin hanga (new prints) school spent most of his adult life as a woodblock printmaker. Unlike earlier ukiyo-e artists whose landscapes typically featured famous sites, Hasui was one of the first artists to record the unknown rural places and urban corners that he found so captivating. He traveled often and recorded the scenic wonders of Japan with drawings and watercolor paintings, which became the basis for many of his prints.

In the face of rapid modernization during the twentieth century, Hasui's prints evoke a sense of nostalgia for old Japan and a respect for traditional culture. His romanticized views emphasize the beauty of the natural landscape; figures are absent or often small and insignificant in comparison. His talent for capturing a mood, illustrating a scene, and drawing the viewer into the image makes for some of the most appealing Japanese woodblocks ever created. Hasui was known for his spectacular snow, rain and night scenes. These wonderful atmospheric landscapes are among his best work.

A prolific artist, Hasui created about six hundred woodblock print designs during his long career, the majority of them for publisher Watanabe Shozaburo. In 1953 the Japanese government bestowed its greatest artistic honor on him by commissioning a print, Snow at Zozoji Temple, and designating it as an Intangible Cultural Treasure.

Comments - Lovely view of the Konjikido or Hall of the Golden Hue at Chusonji Temple. Low stone steps lead up to the building, which is nestled among the trees. A couple of visitor pause before the entrance, the pink dress of the woman carrying an umbrella adding a note of color. A few clouds drift across the blue sky beyond. An attractive image with rich green shades in the foliage. In the book "Hasui: The Complete Prints," this subject appears with rain instead of a clear sky (see Hp-75), and is dated circa 1930s. The rain version also appeared in a 1953 calendar. A rarely seen, handsome design.

Signed - With red artist's seal
Publisher - Watanabe, Heisei seal in margin, later edition original from original blocks

Artist - Hasui (1883 - 1957)

Image Size - 4 1/2" x 6 7/8" + margins as shown

Condition - This print with excellent color and detail as shown. A couple tiny spots in margins. Please see photos for details. Otherwise excellent condition.

Konjikido, Chusonji by Hasui (1883 - 1957)
Konjikido, Chusonji by Hasui (1883 - 1957)