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a beauty in a kimono decorated with cherry blossoms holds an umbrella tilted forward as protection from streaking mica rain; the title, Haru, in gold at upper right, and red seal Mihon (sample) at upper left, signed at lower left in gold kanji, o ju (by special request) Bin-ni, followed by artist’s silver seal, Binnie, and signed in pencil on the bottom margin, T/P I (test print), Paul Binnie, ca. September – November 2005
dai oban tate-e 19 1/2 by 13 1/8 in., 49.6 by 33.3 cm
This particular design plays homage to two famous shin hanga bijin ga designs: Ito Shinsui’s Fubuki (Snowstorm, 1932), with the titled umbrella offering protection from the windy elements; and Torii Kotondo’s Ame (Rain, 1929), with the sharply streaking rain conveyed primarily by 3 bold diagonal lines cutting across the composition.
The Four Seasons series was commissioned by an American collector who requested 50 impressions of the first design, Summer, and 100 impressions of the remaining three seasons. The deluxe series was lavishly produced on thick over-sized paper and utilizing copious numbers of color blocks with nearly every imaginable labor for the artist, including, bokashi (gradation of colors), baren sujizuri (decorative swirl marks created by manipulating the baren), karazuri (lit. ‘blind printing’ or embossing), and metallic printing.
Paul Binnie: A Dialogue with the Past – The First 100 Japanese Prints, 2007, p. 125, no. 88