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Scholten Japanese Art Gallery
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Miyagawa Shuntei, 1873-1914
Flowers of the World of Pleasure
(Yukiyo no hana)

a beauty preparing to paint; signed Miyagawa Shuntei, with artist's seal Shuntei, dated on left margin Meiji sanjunen hachigatsu hatsuka (Meiji 30 [1897], 8th month, 20th day) published by Akiyama Buemon
oban tate-e 13 3/4 by 9 1/4 in., 35 by 23.6 cm
Miyagawa Shuntei studied with the nanga painter Watanabe Shoka (1835-1887) and later with Tomioka Eisen (1864-1905), the prolific and popular artist famous for his kuchi-e (frontispiece illustrations for novels and periodicals). Like his teacher, Eisen, who sought to become a 'real' painter at the end of his short life of forty-one years, Shuntei attempted to gain acceptance as a painter by submitting his work to national competitive exhibitions. In 1899 an art critique wrote that one of his works might only be appreciated by women or children (Merritt & Yamada, Woodblock Kuchi-e Prints: Reflections on Meiji Culture, p. 208). It seems Shuntei took this criticism to heart: from the following year on, he produced numerous kuchi-e, a format largely marketed to the female audience. In a strange coincidence, Shuntei, like Eisen, died at the age of forty-one.
price: Sold