Artwork Details for Utamaro 1, Kitagawa (1753-1806) "Tatsumi Roko"


Utamaro 1, Kitagawa (1753-1806) - Tatsumi Roko - 辰己路考

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Tatsumi Roko - 辰己路考
by Utamaro 1, Kitagawa (1753-1806) - 喜多川歌麿

Artist:Utamaro 1, Kitagawa (1753-1806) - 喜多川歌麿
Title:Tatsumi Roko - 辰己路考
Series:Renowned Beauties Likened to the Six Immortal Poets - 高名美人六家撰
Date:1795-96 circa (this artwork: 1960s)
Publisher:Kyoto Hanga-In - 京都版画院
Medium:Woodblock - 木版画
Format:Large Oban - 大大判, 27 x 40cm (sheet size)
Condition:Fine. Light embossing. Two remnants of original folder mounting on the verso edge.
Price:$140 (EMS Express worldwide shipping: $30)

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Artwork Code:13103-Kitagawa_Utamaro_1
Notes:This woodblock print is a high-quality reproduction published by Kyoto Hanga-In for the series "A Collection of Famous Ukiyo-e Works" (浮世絵名作版画集). The quality of carving and printing in this very rare series equals and perhaps surpasses that of the highly regarded publisher Takamizawa. The carver for this series was Harada, formally Doi Hangaten's main post-war carver who left Doi and jointed Kyoto Hanga-In in 1963.

Kyoto Hanga-In publisher seal, Harada carver seal, and Ito printer seal are in the lower left margin.

Artist: Kitagawa Utamaro.
Title: Tatsumi Rokô, from the series Renowned Beauties Likened to the Six Immortal Poets (Kômei bijin rokkasen).
Date: 1795-96

This type of print shows a woman of the pleasure quarters. The Edo period red-light districts were officially sanctioned, however, they weren't the playground for just anyone. The popular top-class geishas of the day (known as 'oiran') were depicted in this type of print. In ukiyo-e woodblock prints, this close-up portrait view of the upper body is known as an okubi-e (bust portrait).
Publisher Notes:Here are some notes from Daiwa Shinagawa (current owner of Kyoto Hanga-In, 2014) regarding the woodblocks and their survival (or not):
He is quite clear in his explanation that all the blocks held by Nishinomiya were *completely* destroyed in an air-raid circa 1945 (including Bakufu's Fish series and Wada's Occupations series). This is quite strong evidence to support the suggestion that the blocks used after the war for these series' reprints were completely recarved.
He goes on to say that, due to the poor economic climate after the war, Kyoto Hanga-In did not have the finances to purchase new cherry blocks for each new print scene. As a result, whenever a new scene was to be published they used a block from a previously published scene (i.e., carving the block flat and then recarving the new scene). That is quite a revelation that I would never have expected. As a result of all the recarving of blocks, there are no surviving woodblocks from prior to the 1960s, so the blocks for all the usual 1950s scenes by Bakufu, Hiyoshi, Wada, etc. no longer exist.
Search:Utamaro 1, Kitagawa (1753-1806) (See more prints by this artist)


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