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[AC] Mead Art Museum at Amherst College; [HC] Hampshire College Art Gallery;
[HD] Historic Deerfield; [MH] Mount Holyoke College Art Museum; [MH SK] The Joseph Allen Skinner Museum at Mount Holyoke College; [SC] Smith College Museum of Art; [UM] University Museum of Contemporary Art at UMASS Amherst

 


Maker(s):Shibata Zeshin
Culture:Japanese (1807–1891)
Title:Untitled [Cat in a Farmhouse Window]
Date Made:ca. 1880
Type:Print
Materials:woodblock print (nishiki-e); ink and color on paper with mica dust
Place Made:Asia; Japan; Edo
Measurements:overall: 10 1/4 in x 10 3/8 in; 26.0 cm x 26.4 cm
Accession Number:  AC 2005.656
Credit Line:Gift of William Green
2005-656.jpg

Description:
Cat in a farmhouse window next to a thatched-roof awning and a black iron rice cauldron (nabe) being washed by water from a spout of a rain barrel (tensuioke) along with a wooden lid and ladle (hishaku). Signed Zeshin withTairyūkyo artist's seal.

Label Text:
In this work, Shibata Zeshin combines many of his signature elements: the cat, with its wry smile, shows his skill in rendering animals, one of his trademarks. In addition, the mica dust added to the iron vessel references his work as a well-known lacquerware artist and his unrivaled ability to make urushi-e, or 'lacquer prints.'
This print bears his signature at lower-right, which reads 'Zeshin.' The style of the signature indicates that this print was executed after 1832 but before 1840. (See Reisai, Shibata, 'Senkō Shibata Zeshin,' Shoga Kottō Zasshi, August, 1912; and Link, Howard A. et al, 'The Art of Shibata Zeshin: The Mr. and Mrs. James E. O'Brien Collection at the Honolulu Academy of Arts,' exh. cat., Robert G. Sawers Publishing(1979): Appendix I, 184.) The artist's seal, applied in red directly beneath the signature, reads 'Tairyūkyo,' a reference to his home by the Kanda River, where he moved in 1832, supporting the attribution to the 1830s. (Ibid., Appendix II, 187)

The Mead holds two impressions of this print: AC 2005.656 and AC 2005.179.

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