Shibata Zeshin (1807 – 1891, Japanese)

Shibata Zeshin (1807 – 1891, Japanese) incorporated a Western style into his works with much criticism from his Japanese contemporaries. An artist in the late Edo period and early Meiji era, his primary works are ink paintings even though his first training was in lacquering.

After changing his name several times in his youth, he eventually took the name Zeshin, which means the truth derived from a Japanese story about a true artist.  His first real works were fan paintings that were so impressive that the great ukiyo-e artist Utagawa Kuniyoshi approached Zeshin and a lifelong friendship ensued.

Even though Zeshin is known for experimentation with differing materials, his compositions are quite traditional.  His cats are not much different from other artists’ renditions of the same period.

In 1869, Zeshin started working for the Imperial government. Unfortunately, none of his works from this time have survived. Beginning in 1873, he was the official Japanese representative to many art exhibitions in Vienna, Philadelphia and Paris. Zeshin became an Imperial Commissioned Artist one year before his death, an honor given to only 53 artists in the period 1890-1944.

Khalili Collections of London holds over 100 of Zeshin’s surviving works.

 

Cat and Calligraphy Shibata Zeshin (1807-91) Japanese Hanging Scroll Ink and colors on silk

Cat and Calligraphy, Japanese Hanging Scroll, Ink and colors on silk

 

 

 

Cat, Shibata Zeshin (1807-91) Japanese Hanging Scroll Ink and colors on silk British Museum

Cat, Japanese Hanging Scroll Ink and colors on silk

 

 

 

Cat Detail, Shibata Zeshin (1807-91) Japanese Hanging Scroll Ink and colors on silk British Museum

Cat Detail, Japanese Hanging Scroll Ink and colors on silk

 

 

 

Cat Hunting a Mouse, Shibata Zeshin

Cat Hunting a Mouse

 

 

 

Detail, Cat Hunting a Mouse, Shibata Zeshin

Detail, Cat Hunting a Mouse

 

 

 

Cat, Leaf from an album of ten leaves by Shibata Zeshin, c. 1870s

Cat, Leaf from an album of ten leaves, c. 1870s

 

 

 

Shibata Zeshin Cat on a Windowsill

Cat on a Windowsill

 

 

 

Cat Scratching its Ear. Shibata Zeshin

Cat Scratching its Ear

 

Want to know more about the cat in art, history and literature? Then Revered and Reviled is the book for you. Now available on Amazon in both paperback and Kindle formats. 

Revered and Reviled: A Complete History of the Domestic Cat, cat history, cats

 

 

Digiprove sealCopyright secured by Digiprove © 2018 Laura Vocelle

What do you think?

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: