Original Kobori Tomoto (Tomone) (1864 - 1931) Japanese Woodblock Print
Sculpture Coming to Life Kuchi-e Print
The Kuchi-e Tradition - Kuchi-e prints are woodblock frontispiece illustrations used in the publication of Japanese novels and magazines around the turn of the 20th century. Most kuchi-e prints were illustrations of bijin and continued the tradition of idealized beauties in Japanese art. The subjects, however, have a decidedly Meiji era feel about them and reflect the artistic movement towards more western design. Kuchi-e prints typically have one or two folds because of their use.
Much interest has been generated in the subject since the publication in 2000 of Helen Merritt and Nanako Yamada's book, "Woodblock Kuchi-e Prints: Reflections of Meiji Culture." Kuchi-e prints have become highly sought after and collected by the serious collector.
Comments - Fine kuchi-e design illustrating the tale of the carpenter Hidari Jingoro. Possibly based on a true character, Hidari Jingoro was a skilled carpenter and sculptor during the early Edo era. According to legend, he once carved a beautiful woman so lifelike, that it actually began to move as he sat admiring it. Here he leans backwards with a stunned expression as his creation comes to life. A beautifully detailed carved wooden lion stands at right, wood shavings and a chisel on the floor below. A terrific image from this famous tale, skillfully drawn.
Artist - Kobori Tomoto (Tomone) (1864 - 1931)
Image Size - 8 5/8" x 11 1/2"
Condition - This print with excellent color and detail as shown. Vertical folds. Slight toning, a few creases and spots. Please see photos for details.