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 - Fantastic illustration of the Japanese attacking at Yungcheng Bay during the Sino-Japanese War. At left, General Sakuma leads the Third Brigade from horseback, raising his sword high to signal the attack. An explosion rocks the valley below, sending enemies tumbling head over heels through the air among flames and debris, with clouds of smoke billowing across the landscape. In the center, Japanese troops advance on foot, one soldier using his gun as a club against the Chinese. General Sakuma wears a fine black uniform trimmed with braid, a Japanese flag waving proudly behind him. Nicely detailed with burnishing in the officer's black boots and soft shading in the smoke and sky.
Artist - Gekko (1859 - 1920)
Image Size - 13 7/8" x 27 3/8" + left margin as shown
Condition - This print with excellent color and detail as shown. Three separate panels, backed with paper. A few spots and marks. Please see photos for details.