Kawanabe Kyosai, "Night Parade of One Hundred Demons"
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Kawanabe Kyosai’s Hyakki Yagyo (Night Parade of One Hundred Demons) is a wonderfully frightening, sometimes humorous, journey into the supernatural tastes of Japanese people during the Meiji-period. Hugely popular when first issued in 1890, the woodblock printed book provides a snapshot into Kyosai’s artistic and literary sensibilities and demonstrates in beautiful form his skills as a storyteller. Kyosai is considered Japan’s first manga artist whose caricatures of Meiji politics and society were both controversial and popular. Hyakki Yagyo is a rare find that immerses the collector into the mind of an artist.
Available as a fully intact and complete gajoso ehon (accordion style picture book) volume, Hyakki Yagyo begins with a group children and adults cozying up in preparation for a supernatural tale. A man (said to be Kyosai in the depiction) extinguishes a flame from a lantern, and the darkness brings forth a long parade of oni, yokai, and other monsters, each more grotesque than the next. Hyakki Yagyo is a fearsome event and has long been a tradition in Japanese supernatural folklore.
The volume is read from right to left (view images starting at top then at bottom from right to left) and bound together as a gajoso and a continuous sheet, if when laid out would extend over 10 feet. Many of the plates are meant to be viewed as a pair.
Title: Hyakki Yagyo (Night Parade of One Hundred Demons)
Date: 1895 edition
Condition: Very good/excellent color and condition (light soiling and wear on covers; a few pages separated 1” to 2” at fold)