Kachō Gasui 花鳥書粹 [Birds and Flowers]
Numata Kashū 沼田荷舟, artist
Shōzandō 松山堂, publisher
Taisho 5 
25 x 17.5cm volume string-bound Japanese-style, fukuro-toji with attractive decorative wrappers that have metallic pigment on the front and back. Taisho 5  reprint. Initial cho of introductory notes in calligraphy with red hanko. 9 single- and 8 double-page original color woodblock prints by established artist Numata Kashū 沼田荷舟. Lovely colors and good printing done on heavy paper with a metallic sheen. The name of the bird or plant is identified in kanji characters with katakana syllabary below to represent the pronunciation of the bird or plant name in Japanese. Housed in a modern brown chitsu with clasps 15.5 x 18.5cm.
Numata Kashū 沼田荷舟 was born in Nagoya in 1838 into a noble family. It is said that he learned to paint from his grandfather, and he made his living as a painter, helping to decorate the Imperial Palace in Tokyo in the 1880s. He was known for his work in the bird and flower genre, a theme in East Asian art that goes back at least 1300 years, to the T'ang dynasty in China. As with so many other aspects of Chinese art, bird and flower painting made the passage to Japan over the course of their long cultural interaction and subsequently became part of the Japanese tradition of woodblock printing.
Wear and dirt staining of wrappers. Some toning; otherwise interior pages in very good condition. A lovely example of the genre.