Original Yoshitoshi (1839 - 1892) Japanese Woodblock Print
The False Murasaki and a Country Genji, 1884
Comments - Incredible illustration from the story "A False Murasaki and a Country Genji" (Nise Murasaki inaka Genji), a parody of the beloved "Tale of Genji" which recounts the adventures of Mitsuuji, the Country Genji. Here, Mitsuuji and his lover Tasogare have sought refuge for a secret tryst in an abandoned temple. While there, the spirit of his dead wife appears to haunt them. The frightened Tasogare leans forward against her sweetheart, cowering under her kimono sleeve as the demon jabs at her with a striped stick. The apparition wears a leering horned hannya mask with bulging yellow eyes and fangs, the symbol of a jealous woman consumed by rage, dancing about on one foot. Mitsuuji looks up with a grin as he holds his sword upright, unafraid of the demon. At left, an angry yamabushi or mountain priest gripping a string of prayer beads stares around the edge of a sliding panel decorated with a scene of hell, with a demon plunging people into a boiling pot surrounded by flames. An image of the Goddess Kannon rests on its side behind the couple, and smoke drifts across the scene in undulating waves. A terrific design with beautiful detail and an atmospheric setting. Includes burnishing on the black obi and the black lacquer frames of the panels, and faint cloth embossing on the white kimono. A fantastic and rarely seen Yoshitoshi triptych.
Artist - Yoshitoshi (1839 - 1892)
Image Size - 14" x 29" + margins as shown
Condition - This print with excellent detail as shown. Three separate panels. Horizontal and vertical folds. A few losses and small tears at edges, a few holes, slight thinning along folds, repaired. Wrinkling, slight toning and soiling, a few small spots. Please see photos for details.