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Bairei (1844 - 1895)

Chigusa no Hana (A Thousand Kinds of Flowers), Volumes II, III & IV

Medium: Ehon
Date: 1905
Size (H x W): 9.5 x 6.5 (inches)
Publisher: Unsodo
Edition: First edition published 1889-1891 by Tanaka Jihei
Signature: Kono Bairei
Condition: Very good color and impression, very light soiling and wear, some light creasing on covers, a few collectors' notes and seals, binding in good condition. Each volume includes around 50 full-color illustrations.

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This set of Chigusa no Hana (Flowers of a Thousand Varieties) by Bairei Kono includes volumes II, III & IV of the the four-volume series. Each volume includes around 50 full-color illustrations.

About the artist

Bairei Kono was born and worked in Kyoto, where he began his career as a painter. In his youth, he studied Maruyama-style painting under Nakajima Raisho, before shifting to the Shijo-school and the tutelage of Shiokawa Bunrin in his twenties. He also studied with several Nanga-school artists throughout his early career. Bairei was a well-known figure in the Kyoto art scene and played a critical role in the founding of the Kyoto Prefectural School of Painting. In 1881, he opened his own studio and began to take on students.

Bairei Kono is best recognized for his illustrated books and kacho-e, or bird-and-flower prints. In 1883, he released his most popular work, Bairei kacho gafu (Bairei’s Album of Flowers and Birds). This album considers pairs of birds and flowers throughout the four seasons. Like many of his fellow Meiji-period artists, Bairei incorporates some aspects of Western art in his work, yet retains a fidelity to the spirit of the woodblock print medium. In 1893, Bairei Kono’s critical and commercial success was honored with his appointment to the Art Committee of the Imperial Household. Ronin Gallery is proud to feature many Bairei Kono paintings for sale.