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HOKUSAI Japanese Woodblock Print FUJI SEEN FROM THE SUMIDA

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HOKUSAI Japanese Woodblock Print FUJI SEEN FROM THE SUMIDA

HOKUSAI

Mt. Fuji seen from the Sumida from the ehon One Hundred Views of Mt. Fuji


Date: originally designed by Hokusai and published c. 1834-5, this is a later undated 20th century edition published by Takamizawa
Size: aiban, approx. 12.5" x 9" overall
Condition: VG, age toned paper, but otherwise no flaws, uncirculated print, never framed, tipped by top margin to original folio
Impression: Fine, crisp key lines and precise registration
Color: Fine, deep saturated color and bleed to verso

ABOUT THIS PRINT
From the cherry orchards of Mukojima, on the banks of the broad and rapid Sumida River, in the fair spring days when the blossoms are at their freshest on the yet leafless trees. Then the dwellers in towns are glad to sally forth, and catch a glimpse of reviving nature thus giving her earliest sign of renewed life.

HOKUSAI (1760-1849)

Katsushika Hokusai, Japan's best known artist, is ironically Japan's least Japanese artist. Japan's best known woodblock print, The Great Wave, is very un-Japanese. Welcome to the artist often known as Hokusai.

Hokusai lived during the Tokugawa period (1600 to 1867). In a Japan of traditional Confucian values and feudal regimentation, Hokusai was a thoroughly Bohemian artist: cocky, quarrelsome, restless, aggressive, and sensational. He fought with his teachers and was often thrown out of art schools. As a stubborn artistic genius, he was single-mindedly obsessed with art. Hokusai left over 30,000 works, including silk paintings, woodblock prints, picture books, manga, travel illustrations, erotic illustrations, paintings, and sketches. Some of his paintings were public spectacles which measured over 2,000 sq. feet. He didn't care much for being sensible or social respect; he signed one of his last works as "The Art-Crazy Old Man". In his 89 years, Hokusai changed his name some thirty times (Hokusai wasn't his real name) and lived in at least ninety homes. We laugh and recognize him as an artist, but wait, that's because we see him as a Western artist, long before the West arrived in Japan.

"From the age of six I had a mania for drawing the shapes of things. When I was fifty I had published a universe of designs. but all I have done before the the age of seventy is not worth bothering with. At seventy five I'll have learned something of the pattern of nature, of animals, of plants, of trees, birds, fish and insects. When I am eighty you will see real progress. At ninety I shall have cut my way deeply into the mystery of life itself. At a hundred I shall be a marvelous artist. At a hundred and ten everything I create; a dot, a line, will jump to life as never before. To all of you who are going to live as long as I do, I promise to keep my word. I am writing this in my old age. I used to call myself Hokosai, but today I sign my self 'The Old Man Mad About Drawing." — Hokusai


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