N.1 ukiyo-e woodblock print
Period: 1801-04
Condition: good
Size: 16 x 22 cm

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Important sumizuri-e (墨摺絵) monochrome woodblock print depicting in the foreground Zhong Kui (鍾馗), a Chinese deity whose name in Japanese mythology is pronounced Shoki and which is traditionally regarded as a demon queller, a vanquisher of ghosts and evil beings, able to command 80,000 demons.

The work is signed “Toyohiro ga” (豊廣画), that is by Utagawa Toyohiro (歌川豊広), pupil of Toyoharu (豊春), founder of the Utagawa school (歌川派), one of the most important schools of the ukiyo-e (浮世絵) genre, and in turn teacher of the famous artist Hiroshige (広重).

The rare print on Japanese washi paper (和紙), made in all probability during the Kyowa (享和) era, despite the right and obvious signs of aging and the presence of some partially restored woodworm holes, is in overall good condition.