Seitei Kachō Gafu [Volumes 1 and 2] 省亭花鳥画譜 壱
Edition: First Edition
Tokyo: Okura Shoten, 1890. 86 colour woodcuts of animals and flowers and 14 pages of Japanese text, taken from the original book block bound editions, published in 1890, with Seitei's mark. 50 loose passe-partouts (card enclosures front and rear), each with two opposite pages side by side under passe-partout, as well as the original covers; in custom made wooden box with clasps. With 4 minor holes from binding twine in every p. (along the left or right margin), first p. with some loss, else very well preserved copy of this beautiful publication. Image size 20.5 x 15 cm., passe-partout size 32 x 49.5 cm. There was a third volume of images published. Professor Matthi Forrer, curator of Japanese Art of the Rijksmuseum voor Volkenkunde, Leiden, in a letter, called this 'one of the finest examples of woodcut colour in the 19th century.' There is a copy of this letter and copies of the text pages in Japanese with some translations in Dutch.
Watanabe Seitei (1851 in Edo – 1918) was one of the first nihon-ga painters to visit Europe, attending the 1878 International Exhibition in Paris and being awarded a medal. Seitei blended Western realism with the delicate colours and washes of the Kikuchi Yōsai school, introducing a new approach to kachō-ga or kacho (bird-and-flower painting). (14), (86) pp.