"Shim-bi Tai-Kwan"

Color Woodblock Prints

Selected Relics of Japanese Art, 20 Volume Set
Photographs and Collotypes by K. Ogawa
Published by Shimbi Shoin
(Nippon Shimbi Kyokwai), 1899~1908

 

The complete 20 volume set is available. To purchase, click here.

 

Color Woodblock Plates

 
Shimbi Shion gained a reputation for the quality of it's woodblock reproductions of classic Japanese art. In a catalogue, the company described the complexity of the process in this way.

...suppose we print one and the same Picture from two wood-blocks, one cut on the transverse section of the wood and the other on the sidelong surface. The former block is strong and lasts long, but the picture printed from it lacks elegance. The later is quickly worn out, but the impression is beautiful. In short, woodcutting is not a practicl technique, but a true artistic art.

Wood-cutting requires much more time and labour than stone or metal engraving. In printing with it only a few hundred copies of a very elaborate picture we often spend the labour of 5 or 6 men for 3 months or even more. Old Masters of the Far East, Wood-cut Reproductions - 1919 at pages 3~4.

 
The 20 volume set contains a total of 88 color woodblock plates. All the plates are listed below and many are pictured. The number before the title is the number assigned to that plate in the index to that volume.

 
~~ Volume 1 - Listing of Plates~~

*1. The Mysterious Five (Go-hi-mitsu) by an unknown painter

*2. Arhats, the Indian Saints (Go-hyaku-ra-kan) by Myo-cho (Cho densu)

*23. The Dhyana-meeting of Yo-shan and Li-ao by Ma Kung-hien

Summary of Plates:
3 --- color woodcut plates *

*The plate at item 23 (XXIII) is described in the index as a color woodcut. On the descriptive tissue guard it is classified as a collotype. On examination, I believe the correct classification is woodcut. It is basically a brown background with features in black.

 
~~ Volume 2 - Listing of Plates~~

*1. Wall-painting of Kondo of the Temple Ho-riu-ji by Don-cho (a Corean priest)

*4. Goddess of Fortune by an unknown artist

26. a. *Fu-kutomi's Tale by Iyo-no-kami Taka-nari

  b. *Samanta-karunika Avolokitesvara by Sho-kei

38. *a. Tiger in Bamboo Grove by Kano Tan-yu

Summary of Plates:
5 --- color woodcut plates

 
~~ Volume 3 - Listing of Plates ~~

*14. Mayura-vidyaraja (woodcut) [unknown]

33. The Sixteen Arhats; -- two plates (woodcut and collotype) By Shokwado
* (woodcut) (perhaps black and white or with a faint background tint)

*35. Quail and Autumnal Foilage (woodcut) By Mitsuoki and Mitsunari

*36. Nanten (Nandina Domestica) in Snow (woodcut) By Haritsu Ogawa

Summary of Plates:
4 --- color woodcut plates

 
~~ Volume 4 - Listing of Plates~~

*6. Karika, one of the Sixteen Arhats by an unknown artist

17. The Diary of Murasaki Shikibu said to be by Fujiwara Nobuzane (Three Plates)
  *a. Woodcut
  *c. Woodcut

35. Flowers and Birds - two plates -- by Sakai Hoichi
  *a. Woodcut

Summary of Plates:
4 --- color woodcut plates

 
~~ Volume 5 - Listing of Plates ~~

*8. Landscape by an unknown artist

*10. Curfew at a Distant Temple said to be by Mu-chi (Chinese)

*15. The Arhat Suvinda by Lu Hsiu-chung (Chinese)

*31. The Poet Princess Saigu by Iwasa Matabei

Summary of Plates:
4 --- color woodcut plates

 
~~ Volume 6 - Listing of Plates~~

*2. Shotoku Taishi said to be by Prince Asa (Korean)

*6. Goddess Saravati by an unknown artist

*9. Arhat Nakula said to be by Shan-Yueh (Chinese)

*10. Angel by an unknown artist

*23. Shoichi Kokushi by Myocho

Summary of Plates:
5 --- color woodcut plates

 
~~ Volume 7 - Plates ~~
Black and white collotypes except * is a color woodcut  -   ** is a folding plate (collotype)

*2. Ono-no Dofu said to be by Raiju, the Hokkyo

*5. Amogha-vaja said to be by Li Chen (Chinese)
*8. Shan-tsai artist unknown

*25. Ingada artist unknown

*30. Flowers and Birds in Snow by Lu Chi (Chinese)

Summary of Plates:
5 --- color woodcut plates

 
~~ Volume 8 - Plates ~~
Black and white collotypes except * is a color woodcut  -   ** is a folding plate (collotype)

1. Miracles of the Deity of Kasuga -- two plates -- by Takakano Takashima
   *a. Woodcut

*6. Bodhi-sattva Samantabhadra artist unknown

*14. A Deity, Kiyotaki Gongen artist unknown

*17. Illustrations to the Sumiyoshi Tales said to be by Nagataka Fujiwara

32. Flowers and Birds -- two plates -- by Hoichi Sakai
   *a.

Summary of Plates:
5 --- color woodcut plates
45 -- black and white collotypes
50 --- Plates in total

 
~~ Volume 9 - Plates ~~
Black and white collotypes except * is a color woodcut  -   ** is a folding plate (collotype)

*8. Buddhist Saint, Maitreya artist unknown

10. Historical Sketches of Michizane Sugawara -- two plates -- said to be by Nobuzane Fujiwara
   *a. Woodcut

*13. Yukihira Ariwara said to be by Tametsugu Fujiwara

*24. Hagi (Lespedeza Bicolor) and Rabit by Koyetsu Hon-ami

Summary of Plates:
4 color woodcut plates

 
~~ Volume 10 - Plates ~~
Black and white collotypes except * is a color woodcut  -   ** is a folding plate (collotype)

*5. Tz'u-en Ta-shih artist unknown

*11. Bodhi-dharma in a Red Robe by Yen Hui (Chinese)

15. Panoramic history of Ishiyama Temple -- two plates -- by Takamitsu Awataguchi
   *a. Woodcut

20. Singing: Cranes -- two plates -- By Wen-Chen (Chinese)
   *a. Woodcut

25. Deer -- two plates -- By Sotatsu Tawaraya
   *a. Woodcut

Summary of Plates:
5 --- color woodcut plates

 
~~ Volume 11 - Plates ~~
Black and white collotypes except * is a color woodcut  -   ** is a folding plate (collotype)

*5. Dhrita-Rashtra artist unknown

*12. Flowers and Birds by Wan Jo-shui (Chinese)

*18. Panoramic Story of Yorimitsu destroying Tsuchigumo said to be by Mitsuaki Tosa

24. Panoramic History of the Divine Image, belong to Seiryoji -- two plates -- by Motonobu Kano
   *a. Woodcut

*33. Peacock by Soken Yamaguchi

Summary of Plates:
5 --- color woodcut plates

 
~~ Volume 12 - Plates ~~
Black and white collotypes except * is a color woodcut  -   ** is a folding plate (collotype)

2. Wild Geese among Reeds -- three plates -- by Renzan Kishi
   *a. Woodcut

*4. Bodhisattva Lung-meng by Koba Daishi
*5. Red Lotus and White Herons said to be by Hsu Hsi (Chinese)

*8. Landscape artist unknown

16. An Incident in the Life of Ippen Shonin -- two plates -- By Hogen Yen-i    *a. Woodcut

Summary of Plates:
5 --- color woodcut plates

 
~~ Volume 13 - Plates ~~
Black and white collotypes except * is a color woodcut  -   ** is a folding plate (collotype)

*1. Cherry Blossoms by Naonobu Kano

*2. Hydragea and Fowls by Jakuchu Ito

*14. Brahma and Indra by Shoga Takuma

17. Panoramic History of Honen Shonin -- two plates -- said to be by Kunitaka Tosa
   *a. Woodcut

Summary of Plates:
4 --- color woodcut plates

 
~~ Plates Volume 14 ~~

*13. The Ennen Dance said to be by Hirotaka Kose

*24. Lotuses by Hon-ani Koyetsu

*27. Plum-tree and Wild Ducks by Chen Nan-pin (Chinese)

Summary of Plates:
3 --- color woodcut plates

 
~~ Plates Volume 15 ~~

2. Panoramic History of the Deity of Kasuga Shrine, Picture-roll -- two plates -- by Takakane Takashima *b. Woodcut

*/*3. A Pair of Mandarin Ducks and Willows; Small Birds and Chrysanthemums -- two plates -- by Jakuchu Ito

5 Bhesajyaguru: Bodhisattva -- two plates -- said to be by Tori
*b. Woodcut

*9. Scene from Genji-monogatari by Takayoshi Kasuga

*10. Panoramic Pictures of Niraya -- two plates -- said to be by Mitsunaga Fujiwara while the index says both collotyes, one is a woodcut

*34. The Six New Poets by Hoitsu Sakai

*38. Arya Acar by Kiitsu Suzuki

Summary of Plates:
8 --- color woodcut plates

 
~~ Plates Volume 16 ~~

*1. Chinese Imperial Palace by Tannyu Kano

5. Chinese Sages - two plates -- by Gantai
*a. Woodcut

*11. Arya-kshati-sarva Bodhisattva artist unknown

*23. Dancing Girl by Haritsu Ogawa

Summary of Plates:
4 --- color woodcut plates

 
~~ Plates Volume 17 ~~

*5. Maitreya Bodhisattva by Toshitari Ishikawa

*8. Apricots and Bird by Li Chih (Chinese)

*9. Akadoji said to be by Mitsunaga Kasuga

*32. Bodhi Dharma by Chang Hien (Chinese)

*33. The Falling Thunder God by Itcho Hanabusa

Summary of Plates:
5 --- color woodcut plates

 
~~ Plates Volume 18 ~~

8. Nakula and Cula Panthaka
*a. Woodcut b.

*14. Arhats said to be by Myocho

*28. Luxuriance and Elegance by Itcho Hanabusa

29. A Mighty Pine-tree: Puppies -- two plates -- by Okyo Maruyama
*b. Woodcut

Summary of Plates:
4 --- color woodcut plates

 
~~ Plates Volume 19 ~~

5. The Kingdom of Asura -- two plates -- said to be by Hirotaka Kose
   *a. Woodcut

*24. Huang Shih-Kung and Chang Liang by Korin Ogata

*30. Flowers and Birds by Hoitsu

Summary of Plates:
3 --- color woodcut plates

 
~~ Plates Volume 20 ~~

*3. Nagaraji Sadhvi said to be by Jochi

*5. Huer Chuang: A Master of the Buddhist Canon artist unknown

*7. Vajarsattva and the Four Bodhisattvas artist unknown

Summary of Plates:
3 --- color woodcut plates

Stastical Review of Plates by Volume

Vol  Woodcuts
      Color
1	3
2	5
3	4
4	4
5	4
6	5
7	5
8	5
9	4
10	5
11	5
12	5
13	4
14	3
15	8
16	4
17	5
18	4
19	3
20	3

Total	88

 
To return to the prior page use the back button on your browser or this index:


Index for Selected Relics of Japanese Art, 20 Volume Set
Page #1
Volumes 1-6

Page #2
Volumes 7-13

Page #3
Volumes 14-20


Covers Cases Statistics Woodblocks Descriptions

 
Available, Purchase Here

 
Shiiji Tajima (Editor)
Ogawa, K:
Selected Relics of Japanese Art, (20 Volume Set) Nippon Shimbi Kyokwai - Zenkyoan, Kenninji, Shimokyoku - (The Shimbi Shoin), Kyoto/Tokyo, 1899~1908, folio (19 x 13 in - 49 x 34 cm), 20 volumes, double folded leaves (collotypes), bound Japanese style, decorated stiff paper wraps, purple silk threads, two edges gilt (top & bottom), 987 plates (899 black and white collotypes (8 foldout) and 88 color woodcuts), approximately 1782+ pages in total. There is a two page English introduction by Ernest F. Fenollosa in Volume 1. The non-foldout collotype plates are on thin wove rice type paper which is folded over a sheet of thicker backing paper. The foldout collotype plates are on thick paper. Woodcut plates are on thick paper. Each plate (or unit of plates when similar plates were grouped together by the editor) is protected by a tissue guard with text in English and Japanese which describes the art and artist and the source/location of the relic. The art in the first 6 volumes was photographed and collotyped by K. Ogawa (279 plates). Volumes 1-19 were printed at the Tokyo Tsukiji Type Foundry. Each paper wraps volume came with a protective mat finish folding slipcase (grass or grass like covering) with ivory clasps.

The series presents reproductions of Japanese art relics from the earliest times up to the end of the Tokugawa Era from collections in Buddhist Temples in Nara and Kyoto and held in private hands. The entire series was published over the 10 year period from 1898~1908. According to the Wenckstern bibliography of the Japanese Empire (Volume II), the entire set of 20 volumes was anticipated to sell for Y390 in the regular edition format. An edition with silk covers was said to be sold for Y490. This was a very expensive set, even when newly issued. According to my calculations the set would have cost the equivalent of $3,402 in 2004 dollars. To see how I came up with this rather remarkable figure, click here. Wenckstern also contains a comprehensive index (15 pages) of the first 10 volumes of the set.

 



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