Toyonari, Yamamura Koka

Toyonari, Yamamura Koka signature

Toyonari, Yamamura Koka detail

Yamamura Koka, Toyonari, 1885-1942

Snipes and Lotus

hanging scroll; ink, colors, and gofun on paper with details in gold and a dusting of mica, signed Koka with artist's seal Toyonari, ca. 1920s

painting: 25 1/8 by 21 3/8 in., 63.7 by 54.4 cm
overall: 59 1/2 by 26 1/2 in., 151 by 67.4 cm

Yamamura Toyonari (given name Yoshitaka) was born in the Shinagawa district of central Tokyo. From an early age he demonstrated notable artistic talent. In 1896, at the age of eleven, he began studying traditional Japanese painting (yamato-e) with the self-taught painter and print artist Ogata Gekko (1859-1920) who gave him the go (art name) Koka. At the age of fourteen he had a painting accepted by a juried exhibition, the first of numerous professional achievements. He later entered the Tokyo School of Fine Arts (Tokyo Bijutsu Gakko) where he studied nihonga — modern Japanese-style painting. He graduated in 1907, the same year he had his work accepted for exhibition at the first government-sponsored Bunten show. By the time he turned thirty, Koka had participated in almost thirty art exhibitions.

References:
Carolyn M. Putney, et al., Fresh Impressions: Early Modern Japanese Prints, Toledo Museum of Art, 2013, pp. 238-239
Andreas Marks, Seven Masters: 20th Century Japanese Woodblock Prints from the Wells Collection, a forthcoming publication from The Minneapolis Institute of Arts, release date August 2015

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