Japanese Woodblock Series #1: Twilight in Imamiya Street Evening Glow-Koitsu

Ukiyo-e Pictures of the floating world

Ishiwata Koitsu 1897-1987

Twilight in Imamiya Street Evening Glow

Storyline: Finding History

This print was still in the original folder of the portfolio when we found it. The pencil signature made it easier to locate the print information and the artist although there is an established Koitsu, Tsuchiya Koitsu creating Japanese woodblock prints, so his prints came up first. The print markings on the right side of the print, (Hakubo) Choshi machi Imamiya Dori and the seal at the bottom right also locate more information on the artist. The 1st edition had a 1932 date. This print was created sometime during the 1950s according to the dealer information. Known for his dark, moody colors the blues in this print are crisp and clean. The red background sky is intense on this print which is wonderful because I found prints with less red or no red coloring at all.

Ishiwata Koitsu was born in 1897 in Shiba, Tokyo, he is recognized for his village Japanese landscape designs. He studied textile design and worked for print publisher Watanabe Shozaburo studio. The prints full paper sheet measures  15.5 x10.5 and the print measures 14 1/8 x9.25. There is a strong bleed on the back along with the paper fibers on the right side margin & center top. This print is in perfect condition with no bends or wrinkles in the paper.

 What I love about this print from a designer standpoint is the bold black lines and the shades of blues and grays along with the light coming from the rice paper windows and the shadows of the workers heading home. The sunsets glow showcased an amazing pop of color, but this print has intensity with all the hues drawing the viewer into the landscape.

Value based on artist, the vibrancy of the artwork and rarity of the print along with age is estimated to be somewhere around $200.00-$300.00 depending on the dealer.

Woodblock Print Series showcases on Wednesdays.

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