Rakuzan Tsuchiya's Woodblock Price

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Posted by Viola on May 01, 2002 at 13:53:36:

I have a woodblock print by Rakuzan Tsuchiya 1870-1949. This is a description of the print. The back of the picture has the following printed inscription on what looks like thin rice paper.

The original art work for this fascinating lithographic reproduction was prepared by Rakusan Tsuchiya, a well-known contemporary Japanese wood block artist. The birds are Japanese Mountain Sparrows. Each one of the exquisite colors involves a separate operation in the original wood block print. We are told that many prints similar to this use as many as a hundred separate and distinct wood blocks.

AND on the front of the picture in the right hand corner is a signature of Rakusan above the signature is some Japanese printing.

INFORMATION ON THE ARTIST RAKUZAN - The prints from Birds and Flowers of Japan were exquisitely carved from solid blocks of cherry wood and printed with careful attention to detail. Such painstaking work was traditionally handled by the carvers and printers who were employed by a publisher. Rakuzan worked directly with the tools of his trade, closely oversaw all the prints that were produced and took a much more hands-on approach than most of his contemporaries did. The result: lush, beautiful prints that will be enjoyed for many years to come.

Prints of birds and flowers, or kacho-ga, were not new to Rakuzan. He was a student of the accomplished shin hanga artist Takeuchi Seiho (1864-1942), who specialized in painting and designing prints of animals. Rakuzan was also the latest link in a long chain of tradition. Birds and flowers formed a traditional pair in ancient Chinese paintings, and the concept of these two elements of nature together inspired a great deal of Japanese painting. Artists like Eisen and Hiroshige began designing woodblock prints of birds and flowers as early as the 1830s, which are now prized for their delicacy, beauty and composition. In the early 1900s, Ohara Koson also made kacho prints his specialty and designed dozens of delightful bird and flower images. Rakuzan's prints show the same detail and meticulous carving and printing, but the full-color backgrounds and sweeping inclusion of the natural habitat of these birds bring a whole new dimension to the genre.

I saw on an earlier listing information too. The problem I have is everyone spells his name differently LOL. Anyways...I would like to know what the value is of my print? Any ideas?? I have photos that I can email if anyone can help me. Thank you.........Viola

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