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Tea House at Imadobashi (after Kiyochika)

 

Japanese Color Woodblock Print

Tea House at Imadobashi

after a design by Kiyochika, c. 1930s



IHL Cat. #111


IHL Cat. #172

About These Prints

This print (IHL Cat. 111) was published by the Shima Art Company and is one of 10 designs by Kiyochika or “after Kiyochika” published by Shima between 1930 to 1940.  It is shown on http://shotei.com/publishers/shima/catalog/shimalistkiyochika.htm and it is noted that this print is “after the original design by Kiyochika.”

Below is Kiyochika's original c. 1880 print Rest House under the Moonlight at Imadobashi

Rest House under the Moonlight at Imadobashi

The Library of Congress Prints and Drawings division shows a very similar print (see below) titled Yuki no horiwari 雪の掘割 (Canal in Snow), dated "between 1900 and 1920," attributed to an unknown artist1 Hyakurin (Hiyakurin 百鱗).  The red oval seal in the lower left is unidentified.

Yuki no horiwara (Canal in Snow)
Library of Congress Prints and Drawings
http://www.loc.gov/pictures/item/2008660533/


The publisher and origins of the smaller print (IHL Cat. 172) is unknown.

1 The British Museum makes reference to the name Hyakurin Sori (百琳宗理) as an "also known as" name for the famous artist Katsushika Hokusai 葛飾北斎 (1760-1849), but this is clearly not a work related to Hokusai.

The Publisher - Shima Art Company

Source: An article entitled "The History of My Grandparents' Business" by Kotaro Sumii on th Shotei website http://shotei.com/publishers/shima/history.htm

Established in 1908 in New York City by Torazo Shima, the Shima Art Company published prints and distributed the prints of other publishers.  For their own publications, they contracted with companies in Japan to oversee the carving and printing. A red Shima seal, (left), was printed within the image below the signature of the attributed artist.

Shima committed to publish shin-hanga prints having their own seal imprinted and sold at lower prices. At least some of these prints were manufactured at Daikokuya of Tokyo. Shinnosuke Koizumi, who took over Daikokuya from the Matsuki family, collaborated with Shima, and they selected designs that would appeal to American taste. Another manufacturer of Shima's prints was the Daimaru Book Company, in Osaka. (This information was uncovered by Robert Schaap, in his examination of Robert Muller's files.)



As for the price of shin-hanga in those days,  a newly-arrived Hasui oban size print was sold at $5.00, and $7.50 - $15 for the older prints. The prints of Shima's own were sold at $3.00 for oban size, $1.25 for chuban size, and $0.50 for Christmas card size.

After the death of Torazo Shima in 1927, his widow married Hango Sumii, a Japanee immigrant and  successful New York importer.  In September, 1940, the Sumiis sold almost all the inventories of the Shima Art Company to Mr. Robert Muller, the famous collector of Japanese prints, for $7,500. In October, 1940, Robert Muller re-named the business as the Robert Lee Gallery.  Immediately following the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, Muller removed all the Japanese inventory from the store displaying Western pictures. The store closed during the war.

Print Details

 IHL Catalog
 #111 and #172
 Title or Description  Tea House at Imadobashi - (after a design by Kiyochika)
 Series
 Artist  after Kiyochika Kobayashi (1847-1915)
 Signature  #111: Kiyochika (as with many of the other Shima Art Company prints, the "signatures" of earlier well-known artists were displayed on these prints simply in an attempt to "enhance" their value to print collectors.1)
 #172: unsigned
 Seal  no artist seal on either print; #111: red seal of publisher Shima Art Company under Kiyochika signature
 Publication Date
 Publisher  #111: Shima Art Company - possibly printed by Daikokuya in Tokyo
 #172: unknown
 Impression  #111: excellent; #172: excellent
 Colors  #111: excellent; #172: excellent
 Condition #111: excellent; #172: excellent
 Genre  shin hanga
 Miscellaneous  #111 provenance is Robert O. Muller collection
 Format  
 H x W Paper
 #111: 10 x 15 in. (25.4 x 38.1 cm)
 #172: 4 1/2 x 6 3/4 in. (11.4 x 17.1 cm)
 H x W Image
 same as paper size
 Literature

 Collections This Print

 1 Source: Ukiyo’e Gallery website http://www.ukiyoe-gallery.com/still-more-look-alike.htm


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