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Yoshitoshi Fujiwara no Yasumasa Plays His Flute in the Moonlight

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Item No A1-93-247
Title Fujiwara no Yasumasa Plays His Flute in the Moonlight
Artist Yoshitoshi
Date 1883
Condition Hole,Trimmed,Creases,Backed
Size 69×35cm
Price $14925.37
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Fujiwara no Yasumasa is a noble man in the mid-Heian period, which name appeared in the folktale Konjaku Monogatari. In the October night with the pale moon, there was a man walking alone whistling the flute, whom a head of robbers called Hakamadare spotted and followed expecting the chance to rob his luxury clothes, but couldn't even attempt in unexplained fear. The mysterious man was Yasumasa, who, on the contrary, pulled Hakamadare in his home to give him a set of clothes. Stunned, Hakamadare rushed out of his home.The artwork shown is a wood-block print after an autograph produced the former year based on Konjyaku Monogatari. Kawatake Mokuami who was inspired by the print produced a kabuki play, which became so popular. A blast generated as if evoked by Yasumasa's flute tune, running through Yasumasa and Hakamadare following him with a sword in his hands, touching Yasumasa's sleeves and nearby Japanese silver grass. Dark clouds cleared up, the full moon peeked, Yasumasa's presence is further emphasized.

Yoshitoshi
1839-1892
Ukiyoe painter. Also referred to as Gyokuro, Kaisai, Oso, and others as Betsugo. A pupil of Kuniyoshi , a fellow of Kawanabe Kyosai under the master in common. In the end of Bakufu, he attempted to get out of the Kuniyoshi ’s style in the warrior painting, actor painting, and beauty, instead produced many atrocity prints with cruel depictions reflecting the times’ trend, which brought him a nickname “Bloddy Yoshitoshi ”. In around 1878, he was largely affected by Kikuchi Yosai’s painting style, to which he added a western style in order to create his own, with which he produced many pieces taking the subject from historical incidents. In the following year, he began to produce the multi-color print newspaper, his creativity never dried out. He made a greatest success among the Ukiyoe painters of the times most of whom were fading away. He also instructed Toshikata as his mentor. His painting style has been handed down until today through Kaburaki Kiyokata and Ito Shinsui .