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THE ARTIST – KIYOHIRO TORII

If you were to look back to the earliest Ukiyo-e woodblock prints, you would see that only Sumi ink was used, which was black.  This particular ink was created by mixing soot with water.  Because of the ink, the woodblock prints were called Sumizuri-e.  However, from 1704 to 1715 during the Kanei and Shotoku periods, mineral pigment was used to create two to three colors, which was then called Tan-e. 

Over the next 15 years during the Kyoho period, vegetable pigment was used.  This ink was created from using Beni, which is a type of safflower, giving the prints a slight look of transparency.  The prints using vegetable pigment soon changed to Beni-e, which resulted in prints that were brushed by hand but simply beautiful. 

Over the years, we have seen a number of woodblock artists, some well known, and others not so well known.  For instance, Kiyohiro Torii is probably one of the least known coming out of Torii school of printmakers.  This school was founded in 1664 by Kiyonobu, becoming one of the more famous of schools producing outstanding artists. 

Kiyohiro is the artist’s actual name but because of coming out of the Torii school, thus the name, Kiyohiro Torii.  Born in 1750, this artist was known for many of his works during the 18th and 19th centuries such as the actor, Yamashita Kinsaku, a gorgeous color woodcut. 

Kiyohiro used a number of names in addition to Torii to include Shichinosuke.  Most believed Kiyohiro to be a genius with his masterpieces.  For instance, a colored woodblock using Beni-Zuri-e ink, he created Sanokawa Ichimatsu.  Completed during the Edo period, this image sheet measures 10 7/8 x 6 7/8 inches.  While finding Kiyohiro Torii’s work is somewhat challenging, the pieces you can find are very detailed and amazing.  We know that Kiyohiro Torii was an active artist from 1737 to 1776.


Read more about Japanese Woodblock Prints:
  Japanese Woodblock Prints   Ukiyo-e   Toyokuni Utagawa   Eisen Kikugawa   Hiroshige Ando   Utamaro Kitigawa

 

Visit our online store for dozens of Japanese Woodblock Prints

Click here to see our current selection.
 
The Great Wave by Hokusai
The Great Wave by Hokusai
Code:fw1002
Price:$27.95
Kabuki by Utagawa
Kabuki by Utagawa
Code:fw1121
Price:$27.95
3 Beauties by Utamaro
3 Beauties by Utamaro
Code:fw1118
Price:$27.95
General in Battle by Utagawa
General in Battle by Utagawa
Code:fw1120
Price:$27.95
Mt Fuji by Hiroshige
Mt Fuji by Hiroshige
Code:fw1010
Price:$27.95
 

 


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