Yoshitoshi 芳年: Takakura Moon –Hasebe Nobutsura (Sold)

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Artist: Tsukioka Yoshitoshi (1839-1892) 芳年
Title: Takakura Moon –Hasebe Nobutsura
Series: One Hundred Aspects of the Moon 月百姿
Date: 1886

Hasebe Nobutsura kneels in respect as he watches Prince Mochihito and Munenobu escape from arrest by disguising themselves as upper class women, clad in their garb of huge hats with long, enclosing veils.  The full moon is seen as mist rises to cloud the fleeing men in anonymity. The way that the two figures have been depicted certainly is unusual, and somehow gives the viewer the feeling that artifice is at hand. This well-known story takes place in the 12th century, during the time of the power struggles between the Taira and the Minamoto clans. Nobutsura himself was exiled by Taira no Kiyomori, but then when the Minamoto clan took power he was rewarded with a large estate. This work is from a very early impression, and there is blindprinting in the the title cartouche and black urushi-e effect on Nobutsura’s hat.

Condition: Excellent impression, color and condition. Unbacked.
Dimensions: ôban 35.6 x 24 cm
Publisher: Akiyama Buemon
Literature: John Stevenson, Yoshitoshi’s One Hundred Aspects of the Moon (San Francisco: San Francisco Graphic Society, 1992), number 36. See British Museum, Portland Art Museum.
Seal: Taiso
Signature: Yoshitoshi