Yoshitoshi 芳年: The Moon’s Invention-- Hozo Temple (Sold)

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Artist: Tsukioka Yoshitoshi (1839-1892) 芳年
Title: The Moon's Invention--Hozo Temple
Series: One Hundred Aspects of the Moon 月百姿
Date: 1891

The Buddhist martial artist Kakuzenoô Hoin In’ei pauses in his sparring to look down at the reflection of the crescent moon forming a crosspiece to his padded fencing spear. He appears gentle, yet powerful and relaxed. Yoshitoshi is suggesting that In’ei’s innovation of a sickle-spear might have been inspired by a sickle-shaped moon. This is an unusually early impression, with strong woodgrain in the sky and water and the subtlety of the print effectively conveyed.

Condition: Excellent impression and color. 
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 95. See British Museum, Portland Art Museum.
Signature: Yoshitoshi