Hokuba: Drawing of Boy Studying Alphabet
Artist: Teisai Hokuba
Title: Drawing of Boy Studying Alphabet
Date: Ca. 1840s
At a small desk a child is studying a Japanese alphabet “i ro ha ni ho he to” out of fifty phonetical characters in hiragana. His costume seems Chinese? In this room a man sits in front of him with his arms crossed next to a hibachi fireplace with a water kettle and a tea cup. The writings can be read: “ko no ha ni ho he to” “ gojûji ni tarazu banji ? yô ga tari” and “seiyô o soshiru ?? mageoshimi”. The first writing plays phoneticals “ho he to” of the alphabet referring to a leaf. The second refers to fifty phonetics of Japanese alphabet. The last one suggests a critique of Western style and hair style.
Dimensions: 320 x 238mm