Album of Appreciation of the Fragrance of Spring


Takuhanga is a printing technique in which a cloth-covered cotton ball containing black ink is patted on wet paper placed on an intaglio-engraved woodblock. The technique derives from takuhon, the art of rubbing found in Chinese copybooks printed from the works of old masters of calligraphy. This late-18th-century takuhanga album includes poems in the Chinese style celebrating the spring scenery of Kyoto written by learned men from the city who were students of Chinese literature, including Iwagaki Ryūkei (1741−1808). The drawings are by prominent Kyoto artists from the time, such as Itō Jakuchū (1716−1800), Ikeno Taiga (1723−76), and Maruyama Ōkyo (1733−95). The pitch-black glaze of the inked prints made using this technique imparts a different kind of beauty from that of nishiki-e (Japanese multicolored woodblock prints).

Last updated: February 26, 2014