Yoshitoshi 芳年: Rising moon over Mount Nanping--Cao Cao 南屏山昇月 曹操 (SOLD)

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Artist: Tsukioka Yoshitoshi 芳年 (1839-1892)
Title: Rising moon over Mount Nanping--Cao Cao 南屏山昇月 曹操
Series: One Hundred Aspects of the Moon 月百姿
Date: 1885

From a famous episode of the Chinese epic “Romance of the Three Kingdoms”, we see Cao Cao crossing the Yangzi river the evening before the decisive “Battle of the Red Cliffs” in third century China. He is leading a force of 830,000 troops but will meet a hubris-fueled defeat in the end.  His stance is confident as the wind whips his robes, but something about the cliffs ahead that block the moon and the two flying crows exude a sense of ill omen. The texture of the woodblock on the right side of the mountain has been emphasized with a specific technique to suggest the weathered cliff face. This is a very early edition, with woodgrain in the sky and  every hair of the flowing beard unbroken. 

Condition: Excellent impression, color and condition.
Dimensions: ôban 35.5 x 24 cm
Publisher: Akiyama Buemon
Literature: Stevenson #3.
Seal: Taiso
Signature: Yoshitoshi