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Kiugawa Eizan: Untitled Japanese Print

The Artist

Kikugawa Eizan was born in 1787 under the given name of Toshinobu Omiya (died 1867). Unlike the artists with whom he is often associated, Eizan was not an actual pupil of Kitagawa Utamaro, but studied originally with his father, Kikugawa Eiji, a Kano style painter and fan maker, and later with the Shijo artist Suzuki Nanrei and the Hokusai pupil Hokkei Totoya.

Kikugawa Eizan seems to have retired from printmaking in the late 1820s, though he did contribute illustrations for books even quite late in his life. Kikugawa Eizan died in 1867.

Along with Kikumaro, Tsukimaro and Utamaro II, Eizan has generally been dismissed by connoisseurs as a plagiarist of Utamaro's late style, but his work in fact develops, like that of most ukiyo-e artists, from a close identification with a leading master to a studied independence, and contains pieces of remarkable beauty and interest.

Kiugawa Eizan Japanese print

The Work of Art

This untitled print  is  a wood-block print  created sometime during the 19th Century. It is one of the few works of art that sits outside the collection's mainstay of post-modern and contemporary works of art. The print shows a traditional Japanese scene where  a lady  is sitting at the entrance of a house which overlooks a beautiful landscape . Although this is a sepia black and white print, very similar pictures are often hand-coloured.

Although the  untitled print is 19th Century in origin, it sits well with other far-eastern works of art and decorative objects in the collection. The University of Canberra's Art Collection  holds a range of Chinese picture scrolls and a very elaborate wedding kimono that may be of interest to you.