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Hokusai (Artist/Subject) & Morse, George (Author). HOKUSAI: ONE HUNDRED POETS. New York City, NY: George Braziller, Inc. , 1989. Hardcover. First Edition/First Printing. 222 pages. Fine/Fine.

Retrospective monograph on subject. One of the most beautiful books on the art of Hokusai. The true First Edition. Precedes and should not be confused with all other subsequent editions. A brilliant production by George Braziller: Oversize-volume format in wide oblong shape. Orange cloth boards with titles embossed on cover and spine, as issued. Art by Hokusai. Text by George Morse. Printed on thick uncoated stock paper in the United States to the highest standards. In pictorial DJ with titles on the cover and spine, as issued. Presents the final "ukiyo-e" Series by its greatest artist. Inspired by "One Hundred Poets", an anthology of Japanese poetry dating back to 1235 that is studied and enjoyed to this day, Hokusai planned a print to accompany each poem but completed only twenty-seven prints. Unfinished designs and sketches for sixty-four more exist, and are presented in book form for the very first time alongside the original texts and felicitous English translations. George Morse's commentary on the poet, the poem, and the print is insightful and illuminating. "Spectacular. Whether showing nude women divers struggling with their catch while a male crew leers from a nearby boat or the carefree rapture of a leisurely group of men and women observing cherry blossoms at their peak, Hokusai captures with drama and delicacy sublime and ridiculous states" (Publishers Weekly). Ukiyo-e, which literally means "pictures of the floating world", was the art of the common people. It was not folk or primitive art nor was it royal court art, either. Like the photograph today, it could be infinitely reproduced as public demand dictated, and typically presented Japanese life and rituals, scenery and the four seasons, iconic portraits and landscapes. Perhaps the best term for it is "artisanal", as it depended on the mastery of one's craft (rather than "artistic vision"). Great art of the most exquisite and delicate kind, dazzling virtuosity melded to a master craftsman's innate apprehension of The Beautiful, this is a "must-have" title for Hokusai and Japanese art lovers/collectors. This title remains available in multiple subsequent printings and is now highly collectible. This is the only copy of the true First Edition available online and is in especially fine condition: Clean, crisp, and bright, a beauty. All other copies available online are subsequent printings. A very scarce copy thus. 89 plates. One of the greatest artists of all time. A fine collectible copy. (SEE ALSO HIROSHIGE TITLE IN OUR CATALOG). ISBN 0807612138. $150.00

This item is available for purchase. This web page was most recently updated on March 29, 2017.