静穏 (Room With a View)
Price: $ 75.00£ 52.75€ 60.75
Description: This print was designed in 1867 by Shibata Zeshin, and formed the frontispiece to the book kumanaki-kage, which was a volume privately published by the Koga-ren group of kyoka poets in dedication to Kagetsu, the man who founded their group, on the occasion of the third anniversary of his death. What we are looking at in this print is, I assume, the second-floor room of one such poet (a rich man, obviously), with some of his books scattered on the tatami mats, and with the windows flung wide open to allow enjoyment of the sea view. A small pot for burning o-ko (fragrant incense) sits on a small table, and up on a high shelf resting on a sheaf of paper is a lacquered box containing his inkstone and writing brush, ready for the creation of more poems ... The scroll hanging in the tokonoma is a silhouette of Kagetsu himself, and is by Baigake Komei.
Note (1): This print was originally published by David in his Surimono Albums series. He made approximately 200 copies of each of those prints, and distributed them only in album form, never as single prints. It is his idea that after the 200 album sets of any particular album have been sold, the blocks (still in absolutely perfect condition) could then be used to produce prints to be added to the Mokuhankan catalogue, with the printing being done by hired craftsmen working under his direction. The first Surimono Album is now out-of-print, and this is one of the designs from it.
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