Posted by Noel Chiappa (18.104.22.168) on June 20, 2011 at 05:55:45:
In Reply to: Re: Japanese Art Signatures:-- A Handboo posted by Marc Kahn on June 20, 2011 at 03:59:49:
"I've got a few questions about this book:
The on-line blurb says
What kind of search strategies / indexes are available to help me find this particular signature without having to potentially go through 400 pages?"
You should know better than to believe any advertising!
Here's what is in it (pages counts are approximate):
Radical index - 10 pages
Instructions on how to read signatures - 20 pages
Kaisho character tables - 70 pages (1685 kanji)
Details about key characters (used in texts such as age, date, etc) - 20 pages
Place names - 20 pages
Dates - 25 pages
Variant forms of kanji - 25 pages (~280 kanji, with 2-5 variants for each)
Reproduced ukiyoe artists' signatures - 55 pages (~550 signatures)
Publishers' seals - 15 pages
Actors' mon - 5 pages
Artists'/craftsmens' names - 65 pages (~180 per page)
Bibliography - 10 pages
Stroke count index - 20 pages (contains all 1685 kanji)
The artists'/craftsmens' names are given in romaji (ordered by English alphabetical order), and also the kanij identifying numbers, but not the actual kanji (for example, a typical entry is "Zuisho 1041-849").
These names are divided by categories:
- Lacquer artists
- Netsuke carvers
So to find one, you first have to read the signature, then try various readings until you can locate an entry (for example, for Zuisho, 1041 has readings 'ZUI' and 'mizu', so first one would have to look under 'mizu', and then 'zui', to see if there is an entry with the matching second character.
To find the kanji, one can either use the radical index (which is of the canonical kind), or the stroke index (which I find useful for the strange characters where the radical is not obvious).
It's not a perfect book, and of course it is not specific to prints (although it does have a lot of print-related information), but I do find it a very useful reference.
Hope this is useful!
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