Yoshitoshi woodblock print

Tsukioka Yoshitoshi, (1839-1892)

One Hundred Aspects of the Moon: Suzaku Gate moon - Hakuga Sammi
(Tsuki hyakushi: Suzakumon no tsuki -Hakuga Sammi)

signed Yoshitoshi with artist's seal Yoshitoshi no in, engraver's mark Yamamoto, and published by Akiyama Buemon, 1886

oban tate-e 13 7/8 by 9 1/2 in., 35.2 by 24.1 cm

Minamoto no Hiromasa (918-980) was the grandson of the Emperor Daigo, but was most famous for his musical abilities. He played a number of instruments, including the koto and biwa, but his specialty was the flute. According to legend, a demon at Rashomon Gate gave him the famous biwa Genjoua; and a demon at Suzakumon Gate, the location of this print, gave him the famous flute Ha Futatsu. In this composition Hiromasa, wearing the hat and robes of a Heian period courtier, faces away from us while playing his flute in concert with a bearded foreigner. Although the story is not clear, it likely relates to the legend of the Suzakumon demon.

John Stevenson, Yoshitoshi's

One Hundred Aspects of the Moon, 2001, cat. no. 2



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