Original Meiji era Japanese Woodblock Print
Number 3: True Account from a Korean Telegram, 1894
Senso-e - Senso-e are prints depicting wars, most often the Sino-Japanese War of 1894 - 1895 and the Russo-Japanese War in 1904 - 1905. Primarily triptychs, these images filled the journalistic need for illustrations of current activities on the battle front, but also acted as propaganda, encouraging support for the wars and fostering patriotism. These prints emphasized the bravery and success of the army and navy, using dramatic designs and bold compositions, with customers eagerly purchasing the latest prints. Some famous Meiji era artists did senso-e, including Kiyochika, Chikanobu, and Gekko. By the time the Russo-Japanese War came around, woodblock prints had fallen out of favor due to competition with photography and lithography, so fewer designs exist from this time period as compared to the Sino-Japanese War.
Comments - Fascinating triptych depicting Meiji Imperial troops accompanying a foreign visitor, attacking a group of armed men outside a castle. An officer on horseback directs his men to fire, waving his sword at the soldiers shoulder their weapons. The armed men disperse at other soldiers attack them on foot, using their guns as clubs. At right, the bearded Westerner frowns from inside a black carriage, a medal pinned to his chest, as his coachman whips his horse amidst the clouds of smoke rising into the air. An intriguing Meiji era subject with soft shading in the sky.
Artist - Meiji era artist (unsigned)
Image Size - 13 3/4" x 27 1/2" + top margin as shown
Condition - This print with excellent color and detail as shown. Three separate panels. Slight paper remnants on reverse at sides from previous mounting. A couple small holes, repaired. Wrinkling, a few spots. Please see photos for details.