Artist: Tsukioka YoshitoshiSubject: Uchu no tsuki - Kojima Takanori / Rainy MoonSeries: One Hundred Aspects of the MoonPublisher: Akiyama BuemonFormat: Oban verticalMedium: Japanese Woodblock PrintDate: Meiji (1868 - 1912)Size: 24.6 x 36.3 centimeters
This story comes from Taiheiki, or "Chronicle of Great Peace. " Yoshitoshi depicts the lord Kojima Takanori disguised in peasant's clothes, praying for the Emperor Go-Daigo's safety on his way to exile from Kyoto. In March 1332, Takanori followed him and the enemy Hojo guards to an inn they were staying at on the way. He removed the bark of a nearby cherry tree and wrote a poem consisting of ten characters on the freshly cut part of the trunk for the emperor. Go-Daigo was reassured by the poem, as it dealt with a Chinese story about the King of Yue who was saved by his retainer after being taken away by the enemy. Even after Go-Daigo's death in 1338, Takanori continued to fight for his emperor until he chose to live the rest of his life as a monk. A hazy moon peaks out of the mist and drops of rain.
Tsukioka Yoshitoshi (Taiso) (1839-1892) was a Japanese artist often considered as the last great master of the ukiyo-e movement of woodblock printing and painting. The term ukiyo-e translates to "pictures of the floating world" and refers to a genre of Japanese art with a wide span of imagery such as kabuki actors, folk tales, landscapes, and even erotica. This movement was critical in forming the Western perception of Japanese art.
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