Katsushika Hokusai, ‘Sketches of Iitsu’, ca. 1841, Scholten Japanese Art

ehon; with later title slip, Iitsu Manga on the cover, and Gakyo Rojin Hitsu, Iitsu Manga on title page; dated on the colophon, Tenpo juni ushitoshi (Tenpo 12 [1841], year of the ox), Hokoku (expanded edition); along with publishing information, Toto (Eastern Capital), Nishimura Yohachi, Iseya Sanjiro, Fujiya Sobei; on back page inscribed in sumi ink by collector, ?-tukamachi (place), Kitamoto Toyojiro with seal Kitamoto shozo; with light blue replaced cover and title slip, Iitsu Manga, with protective chiitsu brocade cover with bone clasps, with descriptive inscription on inside, Kiseru kanagu tzuroku (metal pipe design catalogue), 1841

Publisher: Toto (Eastern Capital), Nishimura Yohachi, Iseya Sanjiro, Fujiya Sobei

This miniature ehon of craftsmen's designs is a reduced version of one of the three volumes entitled, Imayo Kushi-kiseru Hinagata ('Models for Combs and Pipes of Today'), published in 1823. See Jack Hillier, The Art of Hokusai in Book Illustration, 1980, pp. 181-184 for discussion and comparisons.

About Katsushika Hokusai

Adhering to a common Japanese practice with extreme frequency, Katsushika Hokusai transitioned between upwards of 30 pseudonyms throughout his career, each correlating to a different period or style. Despite the many changes, his surname prevails—Hokusai—which unites the surplus of monikers into a single legacy for the artist, printmaker, and ukiyo-e painter. In his early work, Hokusai depicted the traditional subject matter of ukiyo-e woodblock prints and paintings, Kabuki actors; however, he monumentally revolutionized the medium by shifting his focus to landscapes and images of daily life in Japan. Hokusai is best-known for his woodblock series, “Thirty-six Views of Mount Fuji” (1831), which mastered the landscape while exploring the relationship between man and environment, and contained the The Great Wave off Kanagawa, which remains one of the most universally recognized icons of Japanese art.

Japanese, 1760-1849, Tokyo, Japan, based in Tokyo, Japan