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HASUI - Japanese Woodblock Print AOBA CASTLE - Watanbe LIFETIME EDITION

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HASUI - Japanese Woodblock Print AOBA CASTLE - Watanbe LIFETIME EDITION

KAWASE HASUI

Aoba Castle, Sendai

from the series estate of Scenic Views of Japan, Eastern Japan Edition


Date: originally published December 1933; this is a lifetime edition 
Size: approx. 10.5" x 15.5"
Condition: VG, light age tone, otherwise no flaws 
Impression: Fine, solid keylines, nice surface texture, tight registration
Color: Fine, deep saturated color and bleed through to verso
Documentation: Kawase Hasui -- The Complete Woodblock Prints, Hotei, 2003, page 442 print #305
ABOUT AOBA CASTLE
Aoba Castle was built in 1600 by the powerful feudal lord Date Masamune. Because of considerations for the castle's defense, Masamune chose to locate his fortifications on Mount Aoba, 100 meters above the town below. In the last 400 years the castle endured the anti-feudal fervor of the Meiji era, a giant fire in 1882 and the carpet bombing of 1945. Now all that is left of the castle are remnants of the outer stone walls and a guard tower. 

ABOUT KAWASE HASUI
Kawase Hasui (1883 – 1957) was a Japanese woodblock print maker in the early 20th century. He and Hiroshi Yoshida (1876-1950) are widely regarded as two of the greatest artists of the shin hanga style, and are known especially for their excellent landscape prints. During the forty years of his artistic career, Hasui worked closely with Watanabe Shozaburo (1885-1962), publisher and advocate of the shin hanga movement. His works became widely known in the West through American connoisseur Robert O. Muller (1911-2003). In 1956, he was named a Living National Treasure in Japan.

Hasui worked almost exclusively on landscape and townscape prints based on sketches he made in Tokyo and during travels around Japan. However, his prints are not merely meisho (famous places) prints that are typical of earlier ukiyo-e masters such as Hiroshige and Katsushika Hokusai (1760-1849). Hasui’s prints feature locale that are tranquil and obscure in the then-urbanizing Japan. The dreamlike quality in Hasui’s prints epitomizes a yearning for the past and a preservation of the past in the midst of rapid modernization.


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