Shôtei: Night rain at Izumi bridge
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Takahashi Shôtei (Hiroaki) (1871-1945)
A violent nocturnal rainstorm. Passers-by hurrying under their umbrellas on the wooden Izumi bridge over the Kanda river in Tokyo.
Title: Izumibashi no yau (Night rain at Izumi bridge)
Publisher: Watanabe, Tokyo
Size: Horizontal Ôtanzaku (Mitsugiri-ban), 14,2 x 38 x 31,2 cm (overall size), Chirimen-e
A very rare image, printed before the 1923 Great Kantô earthquake, during which the printing blocks were destroyed. Here in an extremely rare creped version (Chirimen-e).
Excellent impression, colours and condition. On top right two small pencil strokes, minimal age toning. Bottom verso publisher’s inventory number stamped „No. 897“.
Shotei.com No. M-15. Shimizu, Syotei (Hiroaki) Takahashi. Folk Museum of Ota City, 2005, p. 42, No. 84 (Ill.). Shimizu, The Collected Works of Shôtei Takahashi. A modern Ukiyo-e Painter. Tokyo 2009, p. 32f, No. 28 (Ill.)
The Chirimen technique involves multiple, complex pressing operations of the finished, moistened colour woodcut. The sheet compresses and shrinks thereby, maintaining all proportions. The result is an intensification of the colours and a hard-wearing, almost textile-like nature of the finished print. Chirimen-e were made in Japan from the middle of the 19th century on. In the West crepe prints became famous through the books produced by the publisher Hasegawa from about 1880-1930 by this method.
Creped single sheet prints like this one are much rarer than the uncreped "normal" versions.