Koson: Fluttering mallard
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Ohara Koson (1877-1945)
A mallard (Anas platyrhynchos) fluttering its wings on a snow-covered tree stump in winter. The silhouettes of other descending wild ducks in the air above him.
Signature and seal: Koson
Publisher: Akiyama Buemon (Kokkeidô), Tokyo
Date: c. 1900-1907
Original Japanese colour woodblock print. Size: Vertical Naga-Ôban, 49,8 x 22 cm (overall)
Excellent impression and colours, with some gofun white. Untrimmed, with margin at left. Well visible wood grain. Front and back a little unevenly toned, along the right margin a little bit lighter*. A few small light spots on verso. Overall very nice condition.
Early and very rare large-sized print. Illustrated in Reigle Newland/Perrée/Schaap, Crows, Cranes and Camellias, The natural world of Ohara Koson 1877-1945, Leiden/Boston 2010, p. 36, Cat. no. 2, and p. 181, K7.2. cf. Rijksmuseum Amsterdam, Perrée Coll., Nr. RP-P-1999-575.
For these earliest woodblock prints by Koson, printed by the Tokyo publisher Akiyama Buemon (company name and seal Kokkeidô) in a harmonious, muted colour palette and in the highest quality, cf. Amy Reigle Newland in Crows, Cranes and Camellias, p. 18f and * ibid., p. 36 on the toning found in these prints, often with lighter margins: "The fact that many impressions are toned "is an unexplained feature".