機を織る娘 (The Weaver)
Price: $ 40.00£ 31.00€ 36.75
Description: This is a small portion 'clipped' from a full size print - one of the designs in the series Fujin Fuzoku Zukushi (Customs and Manners of Women) - dating from Meiji 25 (1892). The blocks were originally carved by Dave for inclusion in his 'Hanga Treasure Chest' published in 2005, and are now being used for create prints for the Mokuhankan catalogue.
Although not specifically visible in the finished print, an interesting point about this block set is that the key block is made on boxwood, rather than the typical cherry used for most traditional Japanese printmaking. Back in the old days, it was not uncommon for boxwood to be used for inlays, located at the places on the block where the most detailed carving would take place - faces, etc. Boxwood will hold much finer lines than the usual cherry wood, but the small size of the trees limits its use to such inlay work, rather than in full planks.
But the modern practice of making laminated blocks - 5mm veneers of hardwood glued to a strong plywood core - makes it possible to use boxwood for wider areas, and that's what has been done here; the entire keyblock is done on a single piece of boxwood. If you look closely at the 'brushwork' in the lines delineating her kimono, at the way that they taper to impossibly delicate points, you are seeing the boxwood at work ...
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