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Keinen Album

Birds & Flowers

Imao Keinen (1846-1924)

1977 - Keinen Kacyo gafu (four seasons) Kyoto Japan

True reproduction of the 1891-1892 original.

Publisher: Yushudo

Author: Keinen Iwao


IMAO KEINEN Kacyo gafu Japanese art books with cardboard case

The Keinen Album full color pages of the Keinen Gacho Gafu.

Title: Keinen Album: Birds & Flowers. 4 books. Each book represents one of the 4 seasons.

Yr. Published: 1977

BIRDS & FLOWERS- Imao KEINEN. KEINEN KACHO GAFU. 4 vols., each approx. 36.6cm×26cm Stringbound, fukuro-toji, Japanese style. Vol.1 [Spring] has 31 color woodblock prints of birds and flowers, of which 7 are huge double page prints. Vol.2 [Summer] has 32 plates, of which 8 are double page. Vol.3 [Autumn] has 38 prints, of which 4 are double page. Vol.4 [Winter] has 34 plates, of which 4 are double page.

Printed Japanese style, read from back to front.

" The Keinen Album, a collection of 160 flower and bird paintings by Imao Keinen (1846-

1924) of Kyoto , Japan , has been enjoying its deserved reputation as the acme of this genre

Since  its first appearance in an 1882 edition of hand-inked and hand-colored woodcut prints.

The selections include just about all the ornithological and floral species that have ever appeared

 under an Asian artist's brush. The seasonal division of the collection into four parts accentuates

Keinen's  approach—realistic and naturalistic. He modeled his art after the real, observing the

Objects  meticulously; he practiced Sketching the birds in their natural habitat, in the garden, out

 in the fields, way out in the seldom trodden hills, and then bringing them home into his studio.

The result is a rich galaxy of these feathered creatures, displaying all colors and striking all

 postures. Their variety is only matched by the array of flowers and foliage, from gnarled myrtle

trunk that flex their defiant muscles to delicate iris petals that seem ready to take flight.

Real though the birds and florals may seem, the paintings are not mere copies of nature.

There is as much idealization of reality in them as is to be found in the best of the Sung dynasty

Academy  tradition. The perfect forms and their occasional imperfections (in a crumpled leaf or

 broken branch) are ail calculated to complete a delightful rhythmic composition.

Keinen's artistic development started at the age of fourteen when he studied with the

master painter Suzuki Kotobu, whose 1888 introduction appears in his own seasoned calli-

graphy at the beginning of the album here (the second introductory essay was written in 1889

by Yamamoto Akio, another noted name in Japanese art and literature, also in his own elegant

calligraphy). Keinen applied himself to the study of calligraphy at the same time and did not

begin accepting students until he reached twenty-six. His country honored him with such a title

as Artist of the Japanese Empire, and a membership in the Imperial Fine Arts Academy .

More than the famous albums of this genre that have retained a position of honor in

the Chinese painting tradition (The Mustard Seed Garden by Wang Kai of the 17th century,

Ten-bamboo Studio Album by Hu Yueh-ts'ung of the 17th century, or even the Album of

Precious Birds by Huang Ch'Uan of the 10th century) the Keinen Album offers an irresistible

appeal to general lovers of art and particularly to students learning to paint in this genre. As a

model for compositional exercises, and for control of form and color, the album has been and

will remain an accomplishment to be envied and imitated."

Kai-yu Hsu -  Professor of Humanities - San Francisco State University


Item # Keinen 4

 Price: $975.00 is owned and operated by John M. Martello

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