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Gasan (words by Sasaki Nobutsuna) from the Picture Album of the Thirty-Three Pilgrimage Places of the Western Provinces

Nakazawa Hiromitsu (1874-1964)

Japanese Color Woodblock Print

Gasan

from the Picture Album of the Thirty-Three Pilgrimage Places of the Western Provinces, 1925

Words by Sasaki Nobutsuna

Landscape attributed to Nakazawa Hiromitsu

Illustrated Account of the Sino-Japanese War, Volume 7

IHL Cat. #2413.06

About The Print

The album's first of three gasan with words composed by the tanka poet and scholar of Japanese literature Sasaki Nobutsuna 佐佐木信綱(1872-1963).1  Sasaki was a member of the Imperial Academy, and a member of the Japan Art Academy who was awarded the first Order of Culture i 1937.2 

The album's Table of Contents, lists the work as a 題歌.

Overview of the Picture Album of the Thirty-Three Pilgrimage Places of the Western Provinces
On December 1923, only a few months after the Great Kantō Earthquake devastated the Tokyo area, Nakazawa Hiromitsu along with his two friends, the poet Ishikura Suiyō and the artist Akatsuka Chūichi, began their pilgrimage to the thirty-three temples comprising the Saigoku Kannon Pilgrimage, taking seventy-eight days to complete the route. The result of their pilgrimage was Picture Album of the Thirty-Three Pilgrimage Places of the Western Provinces published by Kanao Tanejirō of the publishing house Kanao Bun'endō.


1 "gasan" 画賛 - In its broadest definition, an inscription, in poetry or prose, added to a picture, a practice that has a long tradition in China and Japan.

The Saigoku Kannon Pilgrimage (Saigoku sanjūsansho junrei) 

Japan's most famous pilgrimage, originating in the 11th century, encompasses 33 Buddhist temples in Western Japan (Kansai region) dedicated to Kannon (bodhisattva Avalokitasvara), the Bodhisattva of Compassion, who hears the cries of the world and assists anyone in distress.

The 33 temples on the approximately 1,000 kilometer pilgrimage route correspond to Kannon's ability to take on 33 different forms. One hundred thousand pilgrims navigate the route in its entirety or part each year.

Note: For a listing of all 33 temples go to https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saigoku_Kannon_Pilgrimage. To access an interactive map of the route and its temples go to https://www.thetempleguy.org/p/saigoku-33-kannon-route.html and scroll down towards the bottom of the page.

About the "Picture Album of the Thirty-Three Pilgrimage Places of the Western Provinces" 

First issued in 1925 and reprinted in 1946, the 1925 album contains 58 prints and the 1946 album 59 prints. For detailed discussion of the two editions and additional information on the Saigoku Kannon Pilgrimage see this site's article Nakazawa Hiromitsu - Picture Album of the Thirty-Three Pilgrimage Places of the Western Provinces.

Nakazawa Hiromitsu - Picture Album of the Thirty-Three Pilgrimage Places of the Western Provinces
click on the image to go to the article

Print Details

 IHL Catalog
 #2413.06
 Title or Description Poem (daiei) printed over a stylized landscape 
 Series Picture Album of the Thirty-Three Pilgrimage Places of the Western Provinces
 西国三十三所巡礼画巻 Saigoku sanjūsansho junrei gakan
 Artist landscape attributed to Nakazawa Hiromitsu (1874-1964)
 poem by Sasaki Nobutsuna 佐佐木信綱 (1872-1963)
 Signature
no signature seen. Poet's title 文學博士 (Doctor of Letters) and name 佐佐木信綱氏 (Mr. Sasaki Nobutsuna) printed in bottom of right margin.
 Seal of the artist

 Publication Date September 28, 1925 大正十四年九月十八日発行 as printed on colophon appearing on the inside of the album box. (see Album Box with Print of Kannon IHL Cat. #2413).
 Publisher 發行者 金尾種次郎 publisher Kanao Tanejirō
 發兌元 金尾文淵堂 publishing house Kanao Bun'endō
文淵堂
版 Bun'endō han
 Carver Okada Seijirō 岡田清次郎
Note: the album's colophon (see Album Box with Print of Kannon IHL Cat. 2413) lists two carvers, the above well-known Okada Seijirō and 大倉藤太郎, possibly read Okura Tōtarō, who I can find no information on. 
 Printer Nishimura Kumakichi 西村熊吉
Note: the album's colophon (see Album Box with Print of Kannon IHL Cat. 2413) lists three printers, the above well-known Nishmura Kumakichi; 山県秀助, possibly read Yamagata Hidesuki, who I can find no information on, and 松本兄弟堂, a company founded in Osaka by Matsumoto Kisaburō 松本喜三郎 in 1923, which I believe did the letterpress printing. 
 Impression excellent
 Colors excellent
 Condition good - foxing and minor discoloration seen in margins; left margin and lower left of bottom margin tattered. 
 Genre shin hanga; shasei kikō (sketch-tour)
 Miscellaneous
 Format horizontal oban
 H x W Paper 
 10 1/16 x 15 3/16 in. (25.6 x 38.6 cm)
 H x W Image
 8 1/2 x 11 1/2 in. (21.6 x 29.2 cm) (area defined by multi-color border)
 Literature  Nakazawa Hiromitsu kenkyū: Hon karano kenshō, Hiromitsu Nakazawa, Mitsunobu Satō, et. al., Mitsui Kōkei, Tokyo, 2006, p. 46-48.
 Collections This Print
 National Diet Library Call Number 寄別7-8-2-5 (1925 album, no images displayed); Harvard Yenching Library HOLLIS number 990082993710203941 (1925 album, no images displayed)

last revision:
1/30/2021
1/6/2021 created
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