Colour woodblock print, 1897, from the series in ôban format Mirror of the Ages: 53 bust portraits of beautiful women from the Kenmu era (1334-6) to the Meiji period (1868-1912).
Signed Yoshu Chikanobu, artist’s seal Yoshu. Very good impression, colour and condition. Album backing; 363 x 243 mm.
The Kanbun era spanned the period from from April 1661 to September 1673.
Chikanobu was a student of Toyohara Kunichika. Favorite subjects of Chikanobu were historical and mythological legends and histories from Japan's past and genre scenes with women and children. His best known series are triptychs showing court life in and around the Chiyoda Palace. Like Chikanobu's contemporary, Yoshitoshi, his print themes concentrate on the history and traditional values of old Japan. These series must be seen against the background of an era when Japan was thriving to adopt Western technology and civilization without any criticism.