Mallards in Coastal Scene

Japanese Color Woodblock Print 

Mallards in Coastal Scene

by Ohara Shōson, originally 1931

Swallow and Wisteria
IHL Cat. #1766

About This Print


Originally issued in 1931, this collection's print is a later edition c. 1946-1957.

Source: Crows, Cranes & Camellias: The Natural World of Ohara Koson 1877-1945,
 Amy Reigle Newland, Jan Perrée, Robert Schaap, Hotei Publishing, 2003, plate 146 caption.

"Less successful are Koson's attempts at integrated landscape compositions such as "Mallards in a coastal scene", one of the few dated prints by the artist (1931), in which the groupings of ducks appear wooden and stolid in an equally lackluster landscape setting.  The forms of the diving and swimming ducks in this print are clearly borrowed for other prints like "Mallards and lotus" or visa versa.  In Japanese art, the reuse of motifs and the reworking of compositions by painters and print designers is not unusual..."


Print Details
 IHL Catalog #1766
 Title Mallards in Coastal Scene (untitled on print)
 (also titled Wild Ducks and Pampas Grass 薄に鴨 by Museum of Fine Arts, Boston)
 Series 
 Catalogue Raisonné pl. #S7.2 and cat. #146 (as listed in Crows, Cranes & Camellias: The Natural World of Ohara Koson 1877-1945)
 Artist 
 Ohara Koson (1877 - 1945)
 Signature 
Shōson 祥邨
 Seal Shōson 祥邨 in seal script (see above)
 Date
originally issued 1931 as printed in lower left corner of print
昭和六年作 a work of Shōwa 6th year
 Edition Later edition (c. 1946-1957) with black circular 6 mm Watanabe type-I seal in lower left hand corner of image, as shown below.
 Publisher
Watanabe Shōzaburō
ワタナベ [Watanabe]
Watanabe "A-type" 6mm round seal
 Impression excellent
 Colors excellent
 Condition excellent - some waviness to top 1/2 of print
 Miscellaneous 
 Genre shin-hanga (new prints)
 Format oban-tate
 H x W Paper 15 7/16 x 10 3/8 in. (39.2 x 26.4 cm)
 H x W Image 14 1/4 x 9 3/8 in. (36.2 x 23.8 cm)
 Collections This Print Museum of Fine Arts, Boston 47.1114 (with Watanabe "E-type" seal); Harvard Art Museums/Arthur M. Sackler Museum 1997.253 (edition unknown); Los Angeles County Museum of Art M.2000.105.144 (with Watanabe "E-type" seal); Art Gallery of New South Wales 28.2009 (likely first edition); Rijksmuseum RP-P-1999-374 (with Watanabe "E-type" seal)
 Reference Literature
Catalogue Raisonné: Crows, Cranes & Camellias: The Natural World of Ohara Koson 1877-1945, Amy Reigle Newland, Jan Perrée, Robert Schaap, Hotei Publishing, 2001, pl. #S7.2 and cat. #146.
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