Lilian May Miller: Rain Blossoms, Japan (A) (Sold)

  • Sold.

Artist: Lilian May Miller (1895-1943)
Title: Rain Blossoms, Japan (A)
Date: 1928

Four people have opened their traditional Japanese umbrellas against the rain; each umbrella  has a unique pattern and color and angle of opening. We see a traditional Japanese bridge overhung by willow branches in deep leaf, which seem to indicate that it is summer time. This is considered one of the artist's finest designs.

Brown notes that, "In preparing for her 1929-30 American tour, Miller arranged to have an article on her work published in the mid-October issue of Art Digest. For the article she chose Rain Blossoms, and provided this description:

'Though Japan is now in the seemingly inevitable transition from an oriental country to an up-to-date Western power, there are still to be found, both on the highways and byways of Nippon, many reminiscent touches of her ancient picturesqueness. Amongst these perhaps one of the most beautiful is the gay tinted oil paper umbrella that rich and poor, young and old alike, may be seen carrying on rainy days. These quaint round umbrellas are not only of many colors but of many patterns, an endless succession of designs of breath-taking charm; and cloudy, gloomy days in Japan take on a bright and lovely aspect when two or more of these umbrellas are glimpsed passing down a lane or crossing over an old native bridge, looking like veritable blossoms opening in the rain.'

With the artist's monogram LMM within the composition at lower left, and signed in ink, Lilian Miller 1928. Titled in pencil on the bottom margin, "Rain Blossoms" - Japan. Note that this design was chosen as the inside covers art on the Kendall Brown monograph on the artist.

Condition:  Excellent impression and color. Very good condition. A very thin backing has been applied to strengthen the light paper.
Dimensions: 26.2 x 39.4 cm
Publisher: Self-published
Literature: Yokohama Museum of Art, Eyes Towards Asia: Ukiyo-e Artists from Abroad, 1996, p. 124, no. 164 (brown palette); Brown, Between Two Worlds: The Life and Art of Lilian May Miller, 1998, p. 68, fig. 72 and back endpaper; Brown, Lilian Miller: An American Artist in Japan, in Impressions 27, 2006, pp. 80-97.
Signature: Signed in brush "Lilian Miller/ 1928"