Hokusai: Relaxing after the bath
Artist: Katsushika Hokusai
Title: Relaxing after the bath
Series: One Hundred Poets, One Poem Each (Hyakunin isshu)
Date: ca. 1835
“Fujiwara no Yoshitaka”. Two women and their male companions enjoy the languorous aftermath of a bath, enjoying the calm beauty of a pond from their balcony. Two more men are in the bath, and we see steam rising as a counterpoint to the glove clouds at the bottom. A pair of cormorants appear as if floating on the air itself. From the series “One Hundred Poets, One Poem Each”. Morse notes that to him it seems that Hokusai is comparing love to the bath--”scorching hot and short-lived at first, followed by a long-lasting period of serenity.”This is an early state of this work, with the publisher’s mark left side and yellow above the glove clouds. Compares with the MFA example; better than the BM example.
The poem was translated by Morse to read: For thy precious sake, Once my eager life itself Was not dear to me. But ‘tis now my heart’s desire It may long, long years endure
Condition: Very good impression, color and condition. Untrimmed; with margins on three sides. Minor areas of soiling and binding holes right side.
Dimensions: horizontal ôban (25.6 x 37.3 cm)
Literature: See Morse’s “Hokusai; One Hundred Poets”, plate 50, page 112.
Signature: Zen Hokusai