2面の扇 (Pair of Fans)

Designer: Takahashi Shotei | Carver: David Bull | Printer: Teiko Fujii

Paper size: 19.5cm by 18.5cm | Enlargement | Shipping Code: [M] ? | Currency: $ / £ /

Price: $ 60.00£ 48.50€ 55.25 [Reprinting]

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Description: The two designs you see in this print were created by Takahashi Shotei in the 1930’s. He didn’t originally do them as fan prints - they are just two among hundreds of ‘stock’ designs that he created for one of the publishers of the day. I have picked up quite a number of his prints over the years, and I selected these two from my collection to use for creating this ‘new‘ print, cropping and arranging them into the form you see here.

Most of Shotei’s work is of this type - quaint imagery of ‘old’ Japan - and the clientele was presumably foreign tourists to Japan, who seemed (and still seem) to have an insatiable appetite for such things. It’s a bit of a strange situation - tourists stand in a busy shop on a main street with traffic roaring past, tall concrete buildings on all sides, and smartphones in every hand, and still select prints like this from the racks. And I’m of course not immune to this - after all, I myself selected this imagery to make this print!

I suppose there is no point in complaining about this situation, and after all, it is a scene repeated in the markets of any country in the world, not just Japan. We have ‘set’ images in mind for each place, and no amount of contact with reality can change those. Japan will perhaps always be cherry blossoms, kimono-clad ladies in the snow with paper umbrellas, and of course ... Mt. Fuji.

But they are beautiful, aren’t they!

Here are a few closeups ...

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