Tomoo Inagaki: Cat at Fireside (Robata no Neko)

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Artist: Inagaki Tomō (1902-1980)
Title: Yellow-eyed Black Cat Enjoying the Warmth of a Fire
Date: 1971

A black cat’s glowing red eyes indicate the pleasure he’s feeling by having his back close to a roaring fireplace. We see the reflection of the flames on the back of the cat’s fur in the form of orange flecks, and we see the flames themselves filling the composition behind him. This is a rather large print and it bears the limited edition notation  K-A.P (Artist’s proof) at bottom. Titled in Japanese in pencil lower left and signed lower right. Inagaki was one of the few artists who could effectively render the essence of a cat in a semi-abstracted style. Inagaki studied with Hiratsuka and Onchi, two of the most important figures in 20th century printmaking. Inagaki published his first prints in magazines in 1924, but did not begin publishing images of cats until about 1951. Today he is best known for his cat prints, which have a charming familiarity to them, but he also created still lifes and other themes during his printmaking career. His work may be found in many museums, including the British Museum and the MFA and the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Condition: Very good impression, color and condition. Very faint mat line outside of image.
Dimensions: 52.4 x 36.3 cm
Publisher: Self-published
Signature: Signed “T. Inagaki” in pencil, lower right