Scholten Japanese Art
Scottish, b. 1967
signed in kanji Bin-ni, with rectangular date seal Heisei go nen, ca. 1993
dai oban tate-e vertical diptych 34 5/8 by 11 5/8 in., 88 by 29.5 cm
This is the very first print that the artist carved and printed the blocks on his own. At this point, he was primarily interested in the effect of the printing process and was not concerned with the concept of producing a complete edition. There were very few impressions made, perhaps around twenty, and there are considerable variations between the impressions. For the first batch he produced using these blocks he used a relatively soft paper, and the pigments were often mottled. This impression was part of a group he produced later for which he utilized a better-quality thick paper and sized it himself. The colors are more evenly applied, and he brought out the wood grain in the grey/brown area of the umbrella.
Paul Binnie: A Dialogue with the Past- The First 100 Japanese Prints, 2007, p. 43, no. 1
(inv. no. C-2080)
Scholten Japanese Art
Scottish, b. 1967
Famous Views of Japan: Red Fuji, Fuji from Lake Kawaguchi (78/100)
(Nihon meisho zu-e: Red Fuji, Fuji from Lake Kawaguchi)
The rippling waves in the foreground highlighted with mica; titled along the left margin, Kawaguchi-ko no Fujisan, AkaFuji, signed in kanji at lower right, Bin-ni with artist’s red seal BINNIE, numbered and signed in pencil on bottom margin, 78/100, Paul Binnie, and with embossed seal BINNIE at center, 2002
dai oban tate-e 16 5/8 by 11 3/8 in., 42.3 by 28.9 cm
This print was one of Binnie’s early forays into landscape subjects–which was very well received indeed. The edition of one hundred impressions sold out long before this gallery began representing his work in 2007. As such, numbered impressions are scarce to the market.
Paul Binnie: A Dialogue with the Past – The First 100 Japanese Prints, 2007, p. 109, no. 72
(inv. no. C-3959)
Scholten Japanese Art
Scottish, b. 1967
A Collection of Eastern Brocade Beauties: Butterfly Bow (8/100)
(Azuma nishiki bijin awase: Cho musubi)
A beauty faces away as she adjusts her coiffure, her elaborate obi embellished with gold and silver mica, her green to turquoise kimono decorated with a scattering of plum blossoms and karazuri (blind printed) butterflies, the background decorated with pink, grey, and lavender baren sujizuri swirls; signed at upper right in kanji, Bin-ni, followed by artist’s red seal Binnie, the series title on the upper left margin, Azuma nishiki bijin awase, the print title on the lower left margin, Cho musubi, embossed Binnie at the center of the bottom margin, and numbered and signed in pencil, 8/100, Paul Binnie, 2005
dai oban tate-e 17 1/2 by 11 3/4 in., 44.3 by 30 cm
This print, the first of the Azuma nishiki bijin awase series launched in 2005, required fourteen woodblocks and utilized twenty-seven colors, including gold mica, and silver pigment. The title refers to the butterfly knot of her obi (waist-sash), which is decorated with a gold grid-pattern mimicking the typical seams of gold leaf on Japanese folding screens, and highly stylized swirling silver waves on a dark blue ground. The plum motif, gold-leaf screen pattern and silver waves are direct references to the pair of famous ‘Red and White Plums‘ screens by Ogata Korin (1658-1716) in the collection of the MOA Museum of Art in Atami, Japan. This print is a tour-de-force of woodblock printmaking, and indeed, it was used on the cover of the book created to accompany the 2007 Binnie exhibition at the Ritsumeikan University in Kyoto, Japan.
This print is one of Binnie’s most sought after works as it sold out more rapidly than any of his other designs, including those produced in much smaller editions. Although Binnie has issued variants of a few of his early works by making changes to the blocks and color palettes, the keyblock for this print was destroyed in a grand purge before his move to the states (along with most of the blocks for all of his completed editions) in 2018 and he has no plans to revisit the composition.
Paul Binnie: A Dialogue with the Past – The First 100 Japanese Prints, 2007, p. 126, no. 89 (and cover)
(inv. no. C-3964)
Scholten Japanese Art
Arifuku Hot Spring, Iwami
(Iwami Arifuku onsen)
signed at the upper right, Kazuma hitsu, with artist’s seal Oda, dated in margin at lower left, Taisho juyo-nen (Taisho 14 ), followed by the title, Iwami Arifuku onsen, with publisher’s seal, Hanken shoyu Watanabe Shozaburo (Copyright ownership Watanabe Shozaburo), 1925
oban tate-e 15 3/8 by 10 3/8 in., 39 by 26.5 cm
Many artists of the first half of the 20th century drifted back and forth between the two poles of the sosaku-hanga (creative print) movement, which emphasized the artist as the creator, and the shin-hanga (new print) movement, which sought to produce modern works through the traditional hanmoto (publisher) system utilizing professional carvers and printers. Oda Kazuma was one of the rare artists who was able to produce notable works by both means; that is, with a publisher or independently.
Although Oda was one of the most active and prominent artists associated with the sosaku-hanga (creative print) movement which emphasized a preference for self-carved and self-printed works, in the 1920s he designed six woodblock prints which were professionally published by the prominent shin-hanga publisher, Watanabe Shozaburo (1885-1962). All six designs, including this one, were later represented in the 1930 groundbreaking modern print exhibition at the Toledo Museum of Art.
In the 1996 publication on the shin-hanga collection in the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Brown and Goodall-Cristante juxtapose this design with a woodblock print by Kawase Hasui (1883-1957) depicting a twilight view of the village of Arifuku from a remarkably similar vantage. Both published only one year apart by Watanabe, the two compositions suggest a dialogue between the two artists, transmitted through the shared publisher. While the prominent black lines utilized in Hasui’s print seem influenced by the vitality of the self-carved, self-printed works of sosaku-hanga artists; the heavy falling snow blanketing the Oda print leans towards the nostalgic idealism of the shin-hanga movement.
Dorothy Blair, Modern Japanese Woodblock Prints, Toledo Museum of Art, 1930 (1997 reprint), no. 171
Kendall H. Brown & Hollis Goodall-Cristante, Shin-Hanga: New Prints in Modern Japan, 1996, p. 78, figs 104 (Hasui) & 105 (Oda)
Amanda T. Zehnder, Modern Japanese Prints: The Twentieth Century, Carnegie Museum of Art, 2009, p. 136
Carolyn M. Putney, et. al., Fresh Impressions: Early Modern Japanese Prints, Toledo Museum of Art, 2013, p. 211, cat. no. 178
Chris Uhlenback, Jim Dwinger, Philo Ouweleen, Shin Hanga: The New Prints of Japan 1900-1960, 2022, p. 173, cat. 154
Art Institute of Chicago, Clarence Buckingham Collection, reference no. 1929.478
Los Angeles County Museum of Art, M.2000.105.3
(inv. no. C-3387)
Scholten Japanese Art
Musicians on a Verandah with Lanterns
color lithograph, self-printed, with artist’s seal in hiragana, Oda, possibly an artist’s proof, ca. 1927
23 1/4 by 18 3/8 in., 59.2 by 46.6 cm
The city of Tokyo was a changed landscape following the Great Kanto Earthquake of 1923. In the aftermath of the destruction and devastation, reconstruction on a monumental scale was needed to clear away the rubble and rebuild vital infrastructure, municipal, commercial and residential buildings. An unthinkably daunting task, the restoration of the city was seen by some visionaries in the government (particularly the former mayor of Tokyo and newly appointed Home Minister, Goto Shinpei, 1857-1929) as an opportunity to build a new metropolis for the modern era. By the mid to late 1920s Tokyo was humming with vitality, and consequently, much of the art produced in the second half of the 1920s reflected a renewed atmosphere of optimism and a keen interest in the changing city. Images of the transforming urban landscape and its denizens were a popular subject among printmakers, particularly the forward-looking artists of the sosaku-hanga (creative print) movement.
Oda Kazuma drew inspiration from daily life in the city and frequently depicted cityscapes and dynamic street scenes. His nocturnal views of atmospheric, murky hues were punctuated by orbs of glowing lanterns or radiating electrified light. Od devoted several print series to activities in the buzzing entertainment districts of Osaka, Kyoto and Tokyo, including Ginza and Shinjuku. His figural subjects were often creatures of the night: movie cinema and theater attendees, waitresses and their patrons, maiko (apprentice geisha) and other women associated with entertainments such as musicians and dancers.
This large format print is in company with a small group of masterful prints in which Oda explored full-length standing beauties, a departure from his usual focus on landscapes and urban life. In 1925 he produced a richly colored lithograph for his Views of Kyoto (Kyoto fukei hanga shu) series titled Kamo River (Kamogawa) which depicted the back view of a maiko standing at an open shoji door at night looking out across the river at snow-covered rooftops on the opposite side. In 1927 he produced a triptych revisiting the theme with forward-facing musicians standing in front of a railing, titled Night Music on a Floating Pavillion (Suitei yakyoku), featuring an elegant flautist in the center panel flanked by a woman holding a shamisen in each of the outer panels. Clearly related to this composition, the triptych also places the women on a verandah overlooking a river lit by glowing lanterns suspended behind their heads and with the reflections of distant lights shimmering in the water. It is possibly, perhaps even likely, that this print was the precursor to the triptych, and as such, may be a unique artist’s proof impression. Ten years later he returns to the flautist in a large format print nearly exactly the same size as this composition with a three-quarter length portrait titled simply Flute (Yokobue).
Kato Junzo, Kindai Nihon hanga taikei, 1975-76, Vol. 1, the first tipped in frontispiece (center panel from related triptych)
Oda Kazuma Exhibition: Meiji, Taisho, Showa- Changing Scenery (Oda Kazuma Ten: Meiji, Taisho, Showa- utsuriyuku Fuukei), Machida Shiritsu Kokusai Hanga Bijutsukan, 2000, p. 87, no. 97 (Kamo River, 1925); p. 96, no. 118 (complete related triptych); p. 122, no. 173 (Flute, 1937)
(inv. no. C-3908)
Scholten Japanese Art
Views of Osaka: Harbour (Moonlit Night)
(Osaka fukei: Chikko- tsukiyo)
lithograph, self-printed and self-published by the artist; with series title and print title within the composition on the bottom right corner, Osaka fukei Chikko, signed and dated in ink on the bottom margin, K. Oda. 1919
13 1/4 by 19 1/8 in., 33.5 by 48.5 cm
Born in Tokyo, Oda Kazuma studied Western-style painting with Kawamura Kiyoo (1899-1934) and lithography with Kaneko Masajiro (fl. ca. 1884-1900s). Oda worked primarily as a lithographer, but he was also an ukiyo-e enthusiast, publishing on the subject and collecting ehon (illustrated books) by Katsushika Hokusai (1760-1849). Although he produced six shin-hanga style woodblock prints with the publisher Watanabe Shozaburo (1885-1962) and produced self-carved woodblock prints, the vast majority of his oeuvre was in the medium of lithography. Oda was prolific with his designs, his self-published prints were produced in small editions.
This print is from his second major landscape series, Osaka fukei hangashu (Collection of Prints of Scenes in Osaka, or, Views of Osaka), self-published in 1919 and comprised of twenty designs.
The National Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo, Catalogue of Collections: Prints, 1993, p. 56, no. 464
Oda Kazuma Exhibition: Meiji, Taisho, Showa- Changing Scenery (Oda Kazuma Ten: Meiji, Taisho, Showa- utsuriyuku Fuukei), Machida Shiritsu Kokusai Hanga Bijutsukan, 2000, p. 71, no. 65
(inv. no. 10-5078)
Scholten Japanese Art
fl. 1781 – 1801
New Year’s Day at a Mansion in the Suburbs of Edo
(Edo no yashiki no shogatsu)
signed Shuncho ga with artist’s seal Churinsha, and publisher’s seal Sen-ichi-han (Izumiya Ichibei), ca. 1788
oban tate-e triptych 15 1/4 by 30 3/8 in., 38.7 by 77
A triptych illustrating a gathering of beauties at countryside villa. The pale pink blossoms on the plum tree in the upper right sheet suggest the timing is early spring, while the paper tassels tied along the edges of the verandah eves indicate this is a celebration of the New Year. At left, just inside the open shoji panels, two young girls arguing over a game of go, with a birdie and battledore discarded beside them on the porch and other elegant women standing or sitting nearby. In the foreground a small girl peers into a basin with turtles, and another girl stands near a dwarf pine holding a flowering plum branch. At the far right three beauties and a kamuro stand beside a cage containing cranes, one holding a battledore in her hands. In the middle distance we see a young man demonstrating calligraphy for two young women, and at the far distance are two torii gates and Mt. Fuji beyond.
This composition demonstrates a classic ukiyo-e pairing of conventional subjects with a decadent display of beautiful women. The pine tree, plum branches, and the bamboo at the left-hand edge are symbolic of longevity when depicted together, commonly known as ‘the three friends.’ Both the crane and the tortoise, represented by the basin of turtles, were known to have long lives, the crane was even thought to live hundreds of years. The combination of these elements would have clearly communicated a traditional theme of longevity which would have fared well under the sometimes strict scrutiny of the authorities at the time. Within this acceptable setting, Shuncho was able to exhibit his elegant beauties of the pleasure quarters.
While complete triptychs of this era are indeed rare, this print is even more remarkable when one considers its astoundingly fine condition with well-preserved and consistent color.
Harvard Art Museums, Arthur M. Sackler Museum, accession no. 1928.14.152 (center sheet with fading)
Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, accession nos. 11.14760 (right sheet, Bigelow Collection); and 21.5911, 21.5912, 21.5913 (Spaulding Collection, complete triptych purchased in 1913 from Frank Lloyd Wright in Japan)
(inv. no. C-3685)
Scholten Japanese Art
One Hundred Famous Views of Edo: Ichigaya Hachiman Shrine
(Meisho Edo hyakkei: Ichigaya Hachiman)
signed Hiroshige ga, with publisher’s seal on lower left margin, Shitaya Uo-Ei (Uoya Eikichi), and date seal, Uma-ju (year of the horse , 10th month)
oban tate-e 14 1/4 by 10 3/8 in., 36.1 by 26.3 cm
Perched on a small hill across from the embankment of the outer moat of Edo Castle, the Hachiman Shinto shrine in Ichigaya featured a theater within the shrine precincts and was well-known as a locale favored by prostitutes offering their services.
Bearing a censor seal dated one month after Hiroshige died suddenly from cholera in the 9th lunar month of 1858, this is one of three designs from the series which some scholars attribute to Hiroshige II. Although it is entirely possible that the design was produced by Hiroshige before his untimely death, scholars have noted a slight change in the signature on the three designs, and the employment of distinctively wider suyarigasumi bands of stylized clouds on this and one other of the designs, Ueno Yamashita. That said, while there is some consensus that the third, Bikuni Bridge in Snow, appears to be the work of a different artist, presumably Utagawa Hiroshige (Shigenobu, 1826-1869), scholars are divided on question of Ueno Yamashita and this design.
Henry D. Smith II, One Hundred Famous Views of Edo: Illustrations by Hiroshige, George Braziller & Brooklyn Museum of Art, 1986, no. 41 (no. 12 & no. 114, re: Hiroshige II)
Yamaguchi Keizaburo, Meihin Soroimono Ukiyo-e, Vol. X: Hiroshige I, 1991, no. 86
Mikhail Uspensky, One Hundred Views of Edo by Ando Hiroshige, 1997, p. 100, no. 41
Melanie Trede and Lorenz Bichler, Hiroshige: One Hundred Views of Edo, 2007, p. 132, no. 41
Goto Kenichiro, Kubo Tsunehiko and Sons Collection, Second Term: Ukiyo-e Hanga Edo-e Hen, 2009, p. 123, no. 97-40
Ichikawa Shinya, The Hara Yasusaburo Collection: HIROSHIGE VIVID Exhibition Catalogue, 2016, p. 208, no. II-25
Art Institute of Chicago, accession nos. 1939.1415, and 1965.1043 The British Museum, registration no. 1906,1220,0.644
Chazen Museum of Art, Johm H. Van Vleck Collection, accession no. 1980.1620
Museum of Fine Arts, Boston (mfa.org), accession nos. 11.17055, 11.35851, 11.36876.30, 11.45662
(inv. no. C-3691)
Scholten Japanese Art
Seasons of the Pleasure Quarters: no.1, Autumn; no.2, Spring; no.3, Summer; and no.4, Winter
the complete set of four prints; signed Tsunetomi hitsu, published by Nakajima Jutaro (Nakajima Seikado, Tokyo) in a limited edition of 500 (numbered on the original folders), ca. June 1918
no. 1, Autumn: 15 1/2 by 10 3/4 in., 39.5 by 26 cm
no. 2, Spring: 15 3/8 by 10 3/8 in., 39.2 by 26.3 cm
no. 3, Summer 15 3/8 by 10 3/4 in., 39.2 by 26 cm
no. 4, Winter: 15 1/2 by 10 3/8 in., 39.5 by 26.3 cm
Although Kitano Tsunetomi was born in Kanazawa, he moved to Osaka as a young man where he would establish himself as a leading master of bijin-ga, and in his own lifetime, earn recognition as the first Nihonga artist from Osaka. He began his artistic career from 1892 to 1895 as an apprentice at woodblock printing shops in his hometown. In 1897 he worked for the carver Nakayama Komataro, before moving to Osaka in 1898 to study with the painter and print designer Ineno Toshitsune (1858-1907), a former pupil of Mizuno Toshikata (1866-1908). In 1899 he began publishing illustrations in the monthly Shin-Nihon (‘New Japan’) while he also began studying yoga (Western-style painting).
He began self-publishing prints in 1918, starting with these four oban bijin-ga in the Seasons of the Pleasure Quarters set. The prints would have originally been issued by the publisher together in a folder decorated with thistle on the front with the artist’s signature series title, publisher’s name, and a hand-numbered limited edition stamp. The verso of the folders were dated June 1918 and reiterated the artist and publisher details, and creditng the printer Tadakoro Rikimatsu.
Kato Junzo, comp., Kindai Nihon hanga taikei, 1975-76, Vol. III, pl. 102 (Winter), pl. 103 (Spring)
Amy Reigle Stephens, gen. ed., The New Wave, 1993, p. 132, pl. 137 (Winter)
Kendall H. Brown, Light in Darkness, 1996, p. 54, no. 59 (Winter), no. 60 (Summer)
Amy Reigle Neland, and Hamanaka Shinji, The Female Image, 2000, nos. 102-105
Amy Reigle Newland, gen. ed., Printed to Perfection, 2004, p. 66, no. 45 (Winter, featured also on cover)
Koyama Shuko, Beautiful Shin Hanga- Revitalization of Ukiyo-e, Tokyo Metropolitan Edo-Tokyo Museum, 2009, p. 187, no. 4-69 (Winter)
Ukiyo-e Modern, Machida City Museum of Graphic Arts, 2018, p. 31, no. 30 (Winter)
Abe Shuichi, Prints of Japanese Beauties in the 20th Century, 2022, pp. 84-85, nos. 118-121
(inv. no. 10-5577)
Scholten Japanese Art
Kumoi Cherry Tree
signed in sumi ink, Yoshida, with red artist’s seal Hiroshi, and jizuri (self-printed) seal on left margin, followed by the date, Taisho jugonen saku (made in Taisho 15 ), followed by the title, Kumoizakura, with English title in pencil on the bottom margin, Kumoi cherry trees, and pencil signature Hiroshi Yoshida, with carver’s seal of Maeda Yujiro (1889-1957), ca. 1926
23 by 29 1/8 in., 58.5 by 74 cm
This print from 1926 is based on a large watercolor painting, Memories of Japan (71 by 94 cm.), which was first exhibited at the Detroit Institute of Arts in 1899 and was purchased shortly thereafter by the museum through a special public subscription which raised $500 for the acquisition. The subject portrays the daughters of the artist Kawai Shinzo (1867-1936) viewing blossoming cherry trees at Mount Yoshino in the moonlight. Twenty-seven years later Yoshida simplifies the composition slightly for the print format by reducing the number of figures from five to two and removing foliage and grasses from the foreground. In order to produce such an unusually large woodblock print, Yoshida divided the composition into three separate sections- a technical feat which is impossible to detect on the end result. Given the printing challenges it is not surprising Blair records in the 1930 Toledo Museum of Art exhibition catalogue that Yoshida produced only fifty impressions of this monumental print.
Dorothy Blair, Modern Japanese Prints, Toledo Museum of Art, 1930, cat. no. 298
Ogura Tadao, Yoshida Hiroshi zenhangashu (The Complete Woodblock Prints of Hiroshi Yoshida), 1987, p. 80, no. 76
Yoshida Hiroshi: Woodblock Print Exhibition, Kushigata Shunsen Museum of Art, 1994, cat. no. 62
Hiroshi Yoshida Exhibition: A Master of Modern Landscape Painting, Fukuoka Museum, 1996, p. 138, no. 119
Yoshida Hiroshi Exhibition, MOA Museum of Art, 2000, p. 73, no. 93
Laura W. Allen, ed., A Japanese Legacy: Four Generations of Yoshida Family Artists, The Minneapolis Institute of Arts, 2002, cat. no. 3 Memories of Japan watercolor, cat. no. 15 Kumoi Cherry Trees print from Fukuoka Museum of Art
Carolyn M. Putney, et. al., Fresh Impressions: Early Modern Japanese Prints, Toledo Museum of Art, 2013, p. 296, cat. 305
Yoshida Hiroshi: A Retrospective, Chiba City Museum of Art, 2016, p. 178, no. 4-77
(inv. no. C-3699)
Scholten Japanese Art
ink, gofun, and colors on silk, mounted on brocade, signed Tsunetomi and sealed Tsunetomi; accompanied by tomobako with title, Hanayome, and signed and sealed Tsunetomi, ca. 1930
painting: 20 by 22 1/8 in., 50.7 by 56.2 cm
overall: 59 5/8 by 28 58 in., 151.5 by 72.7 cm
During the first two decades of the new century, Tsunetomi emerged as a successful bijin-ga painter and illustrator. His early work was particularly distinctive; while many artists of this period were portraying women as relatively sweet and innocent, Tsunetomi’s beauties were infused with a compelling combination of mysterious sexuality and realistic vulnerabilities. In 1910 he began exhibiting his paintings at the government sponsored Bunten exhibitions, and from 1914 with Inten, the exhibition of the Nihon Bijutsu-in (Japan Art Institute). After he became a full member of the Nihon Bijutsu-in in 1917, Tsunetomi’s paintings style changed. His depictions of bijin became more idealized and refined, with less emphasis on exploring further dimensions of their sexuality. He began self-publishing prints in 1918, and established his juku (private teaching atelier), Haku-yosha (White Radiance Company) where he taught other prominent Osaka artists such as Shima Seien (1892-1970) and Nakamura Teii (1900-1982).
This half-length portrait of a bride in profile relates directly to another painting of the same subject illustrated in the catalogue accompanying the 2003 Retrospective: Kitano Tsunetomi exhibition held at the Osaka City Museum of Modern Art (p. 98, no. 64); as well as a closer bust portrait of the same subject published in volume 3 of the Gendai Nihon Bijinga Zenshu (p. 85). Other paintings illustrated on the same pages feature beauties composed from a similar angle. The figures are rendered in profile with their steady gaze cast downward and away, contemplative and introspective, lost in thought and withdrawn from our realm.
Ex. Patricia Ann Salmon (1933-2022), Japanese art collector and dealer, and contributor to the 2002 landmark exhibition and publication, Taisho Chic
(inv. no. C-3623)
Scholten Japanese Art
After the Rain – A Mild Spring Day
(Ugo – Haru-uraraka)
hanging scroll, ink, gofun, and color on silk; posthumously signed and sealed on the painting by Tateishi Hideharu (the artist’s son), Harumi, accompanied by wood storage box likewise titled, signed and sealed by Hideharu: titled on the lid: Ugo (After the Rain), and signed and sealed on lid verso: Meguro Gajoen Bijitsukan kyuzo (former collection of Meguro Gajoen Art Museum), Harumi ga (painted by Harumi), sealed Harumi, and signed Tateishi Hideharu kan dai, with seal Hideharu; with inventory label on the back of the scroll, shigatsu gogatsu (4th month, 5th month), dai ni-san-kyu go (no. 239), mumei hitsu (signed, unnamed), gadai (titled): Haru-uraraka (A Mild Spring Day), ca. 1935
painting: 48 7/8 by 16 3/8 in., 124.2 by 41.6 cm
overall: 85 7/8 by 22 in., 218 by 56 cm
An elegant beauty walks along a paved pathway beside a canal. She is prepared for rain, carrying a deep red Western-style red umbrella and her feet are elevated in red-tipped ama-geta (lit. ‘rain geta‘) protecting her hem from dragging in puddles. Her hair is coiffed in a modern style with coquette hair rolls at her temple cascading into a single roll toward the nape of her neck. The pattern on her kimono is decorated with butterflies and moths, representative of night and day as well as male and female subjects. Two pairs of mandarin ducks, symbolic of love and fidelity, are paired off in the canal zig-zagging behind her. The paved walkway and steep slopes planted with pines could be located along the retaining walls on the northside of the moat surrounding the Imperial Palace in Tokyo.
Harumi was a favorite artist of Hosokawa Rikizo (1889-1945), the owner of the Meguro Gajoen (Palace of Lyrical Elegance), an entertainment complex built in the aftermath of the 1923 earthquake which opened in 1931. Hosokawa was a major patron of Nihonga artists and acquired at least thirty of Harumi’s paintings for the extensive Meguro Gajoen Museum of Art collection. The collection was dispersed in 2005 and this painting was acquired by Patricia Salmon (1933-2022), a visionary collector and dealer who was a driving force behind the 2002 landmark publication and exhibition, Taisho Chic, at the Honolulu Museum of Art. Important works by Harumi are in the collections of The Cleveland Museum of Art and the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, where one of his most famous works, the two-panel screen, Clover (accession no. 2004.242) is found.
Hosokawa Rikizo (1889-1945); Meguro Gajoen Museum of Art, Tokyo
Patricia Ann Salmon (1933-2022)
Hosono Masanobu et al., Kindaino bijinga: Meguro Gagoen Korekushon (Paintings of Japanese Beauties at the Turn of the Century), 1988, pl. 379
(inv. no. C-3624)
NEW ONLINE EXHIBITION
Paul Binnie: 30 Prints for 30 Years of Printmaking
To celebrate the release of new prints by Paul Binnie, as well as his highly prolific and accomplished career, we have assembled this very special online exhibition celebrating his 30th year as a printmaker.
This online show not only features the recent print releases of Bubble Era of 1990 and Tears (red-bronze variant), but also some of the artist’s most rare and sought-after designs, including such rarities as his 1994 Nocturne and the 2005 Butterfly Bow, both of which have long proven (nearly) impossible to acquire by his most ardent collectors.
To view these works and others in the exhibition, click here.
NEW PRINT SET RELEASE
We are pleased to announce the release of an exciting new print set by Paul Binnie, The Moon Moth Suite, comprising of a set of three woodblock printed illustrations, Moon Moth Mask, Scarlet Sabre Bills, and Sea Dragon Mask. The designs are featured in a 2023 re-release of the 1961 science fiction book, The Moon Moth, by Jack Vance (1916-2013).
Binnie was commissioned by the publisher Cordes Press in the United Kingdom to provide the prints for a new edition of the famous and influential novella. The Cordes edition features three black and white illustrations which are based on Binnie’s keyblock prints of the designs, and there is also a (sold-out) luxury edition limited to only fourteen copies of the book with hand-printed color woodblock prints. Inspired by this unique project, Binnie used the same blocks to produce this small edition limited to thirty impressions of the suite of three full-color prints utilizing slightly variant color schemes embellished with the addition of mica, embossing, gold metallic printing, and extra bokashi shadings.
To learn more about this exciting new release, click here.
IN THE GALLERY
KAZUMA/KOIZUMI: Chasing Modernity
This Fall, Scholten Japanese Art presents KAZUMA/KOIZUMI: Chasing Modernity, which juxtaposes the work of two modern printmakers, Oda Kazuma (1881-1956), and Kishio Koizumi (1893-1945), both prominent members of the sosaku hanga (creative print) movement who shared an interest in depicting daily life in views of modern Japan, particularly the restoration and transformation of Tokyo following the 1923 earthquake. Although both embraced the ‘artist as creator’ ethos associated with sosaku hanga, they utilized varying techniques; Oda Kazuma was the leading color lithographer in Japan who also produced self-carved as well professionally published woodblock prints; while Kishio Koizumi was a dedicated woodblock carver and printer.
The exhibition is displayed in two parts:
Part One: Oda Kazuma features various landscape and figural works produced using different techniques including lithographs, as well as self-carved and professionally published woodblock prints.
The full index can be viewed here.
Part Two: Kishio Koizumi features a complete set of the artist’s monumental series, One Hundred Pictures of Great Tokyo in the Showa Era (Showa dai Tokyo hyakuzue), produced between 1928 and 1940.
The full set can be viewed here and individual works from the set here.
MORE ONLINE EXHIBITIONS
Meiji Period (1868-1912)
An online presentation of Meiji Period (1868-1912) woodblock prints in celebration of the Japanese Art Society of America’s 50th anniversary exhibition, Meiji Modern: Fifty Years of New Japan, opening on October 3, 2023 at the Asia Society here in New York.
Our selection includes works by Kiyochika, Yoshitoshi, Ginko, Kunichika, Chikanobu, and Shuntei, among others, and concludes with a group of fifteen prints from the collaborative series promoting modern goods, Collections of Famous Products, The Pride of Tokyo, featuring complex mitate (parodies) enriched by layered meanings and cultural references which are revealed by unlocking the rebuses (picture puzzles) and wordplay.
In Memoriam – 1923 Great Kanto Earthquake
This year the month of September marks the 100th anniversary of the 1923 Great Kanto Earthquake and we recognize the tragedy in solemn commemoration. While we frequently refer to this event in our field as a means to date and categorize modern Japanese prints (as in ‘pre-earthquake’ or ‘post-earthquake) it is imperative to remember the humanity, resilience, and profound spirit of those who endured its devastating impact.