This very scarce oban original woodblock print measures 10 1/4" high by 15 3/8" wide. It depicts two Geishas or Courtesans by a large lantern, strolling on a snowy day in a garden laden with snow. They are watching two small ducks navigate the icy water. Woodblock prints by Oda Kazuma are considered ultrarare. This print is a first edition by Watanabe, dating to c1930. Oda Kazuma made significant contributions to both the shin hanga and sosaku hanga movements. He first studied painting with Kawamura Kiyoo and learned lithography from Kaneko Masajiro. Oda's brother, a lithograph technician in Osaka, was also important to his early education. Throughout his life, Oda worked primarily as a lithographer, although occasionally he carved and printed his own woodblock prints. In 1924, Oda collaborated with the shin hanga publisher Watanabe Shozaburo on a small series of woodblock prints. These designs were primarily Japanese landscapes with a nostalgic feeling similar to work by Hiroshi Yoshida and Kawase Hasui, but in a more painterly style. These woodblock prints published by Watanabe were included in the 1930 Toledo exhibition on shin hanga. It bears Kazuma's seal and Watanabe's 'D' seal. This print is in excellent condition, with some fading, and a tiny stab hole in the upper right margin. It does not appear to have ever been framed.
Oda Kazuma (1882-1956) 'Geishas by Lantern'
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