Drastic Price Reduction Moved to Clearance, Act Fast!

by Kunichika (1835 - 1900)

Current Status

Drastic Price Reduction Moved to Clearance, Act Fast! by Kunichika (1835 - 1900)

Original Kunichika (1835 - 1900) Japanese Woodblock Print
Drastic Price Reduction Moved to Clearance, Act Fast!

Series; Thirty-two Fashionable Physiognomies, 1869

Thirty-two Fashionable Physiognomies - Attractive half-length portrait from Kunichika's early beauty series "Thirty-two Fashionable Physiognomies." The number thirty-two in the title is a playful reference to the thirty-two notable features of Buddha. Each design shows a contemporary beauty in a scene from daily life, reading, enjoying a boat ride, or relaxing. These images are beautifully detailed with extremely fine line work in the hair and soft bokashi shading in the background. Some feature deluxe publishing techniques such as embossing or burnishing. A rarely seen Kunichika bijin series from early in his career.

Chirimen-gami-e - This is an unusual "crepe" print, known in Japanese as "chirimen-gami-e," which literally means "compressed thread paper print." After the woodblock was printed in the traditional manner, the print went through a mechanical process that added a crinkled texture while also reducing the size considerably. The print was dampened and layered with a cardboard mold incised with parallel lines, then wrapped around an upright wooden post on a lever press. An opening in the lever fit over the post, and when pressed down over the post, compressed the paper into the incised lines on the cardboard mold. This process would be repeated as many as 10 or more times, with the print slightly reoriented each time to achieve a uniform, highly textured, crinkled appearance similar to crepe paper.

Although examples are known from as early as 1800 in Edo, chirimen-gami-e became popular with the Western market during the Meiji era. Crepe prints were often used for books, especially for children's books as the creping process made the paper less likely to tear. Takejiro Hasegawa was the best-known publisher of chirimen-bon or crepe paper books, producing many titles in English and other European languages for the foreign market starting in 1885. An interesting example of a specialized Japanese print technique that would make a fun addition to a collection.

Artist - Kunichika (1835 - 1900)

Image Size - 12 1/4" x 8 7/8" + margin as shown

Condition - Nice color and detail. Loss at corner. Some prints have a few creases or folds at edges.


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Drastic Price Reduction Moved to Clearance, Act Fast! by Kunichika (1835 - 1900)
Drastic Price Reduction Moved to Clearance, Act Fast! by Kunichika (1835 - 1900)

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