Artwork Details for Shoson, Ohara (1877-1945)- Koson "Egret on Snow-covered Branch"

Shoson, Ohara (1877-1945)- Koson - Egret on Snow-covered Branch

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Egret on Snow-covered Branch
by Shoson, Ohara (1877-1945)- Koson - 小原祥邨-小原古邨

Artist:Shoson, Ohara (1877-1945)- Koson - 小原祥邨-小原古邨
Title:Egret on Snow-covered Branch
Date:1910s (this artwork: First edition)
Publisher:Watanabe - 渡辺
Medium:Woodblock - 木版画
Format:Mitsugiri - 三つ切り, 16.7 x 37.4cm (image size)
Condition:This print has good colour and bleed through; it is attached along the upper margin to a mat board and has its original margins. It still has the light brown detail on the feathers and green around the beak, two colours that fade out first in old prints exposed to light. Age appropriate uniform light toning and three tiny brown spots on the feathers. There are some slight surface marks on black background which are only visible when viewed at an angle. If you know your prints you know how hard this is to find and in such fine condition.
Price: Sold
Artwork Code:13681-Ohara_Shoson
Notes:This is the holy grail of Shoson's fabulous woodblock career. Pictured on the cover of the first edition of Crows Cranes and Camellias. Considered pre-earthquake, it was never reprinted and is as rare as they come. Quoting from Crows Cranes and Camellias: "Richard Illing describes the print as 'a masterpiece of graphic art.' The print is executed in black and various shades of grey with touches of colour in the bird's leg, beak and eyes. Gaufrage has been employed on the feathers in combination with a pale shade of brown. There is also embossing on the snow-covered tendrils of the tree branches. The snowflakes have been created by unprinted areas in the black background. The result is very effective and dramatic."
Artist Biography:
Ohara Koson (小原 古邨?, Kanazawa 1877 ? Tokyo 1945) was a Japanese painter and printmaker of the late 19th and early 20th centuries, part of the shin-hanga ("new prints") movement.

He was born Ohara Matao; it is thought that he started training in painting and design at the Ishikawa Prefecture Technical School in 1889-1893. He also studied painting with Suzuki Kason (1860 ? 1919), although accounts differ on whether this happened during his school years or after he moved to Tokyo in the middle to late 1890s.

In Tokyo, he produced some woodblock triptychs illustrating episodes of the Russo-Japanese War, but most of his production was prints of animals (kacho-ga). He worked at first with publishers Akiyama Buemon (Kokkeido?) and Matsuki Heikichi (Daikokuya), signing his work Koson. Starting around 1926, he became associated with the publisher Watanabe Shozaburo, and signed his work Shoson. He also worked with the publisher Kawaguchi, signing his works Hoson.

Through his association with Watanabe, Ohara's work was exhibited abroad, and his prints sold well, particularly in the United States. He was active designing prints until at least 1935, and died at his home in Tokyo in 1945. (from Wikipedia)

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