Japan art and the Edo artist Katsukawa Shunzan

Japan art and the Edo artist Katsukawa Shunzan

Lee Jay Walker

Modern Tokyo Times

The Japanese artist Katsukawa Shunzan was active in art between 1782 and 1798. However, his exact birth and death are unknown and open to speculation. Therefore, despite Shunzan producing lovely art, very little is known about this intriguing individual.

His name obviously implies that he belongs to the Katsukawa School of Art. Initially, he studied under Katsukawa Shunsho. However, in time he became influenced by Torii Kiyonaga. 

Shunzan focused on historical prints and actors to a large degree. This concerns the early development of his art. However, the influence of Kiyonaga entailed that bijin-ga (beautiful women) became a popular subject matter for Shunzan. 

He was active in Toky for art pieces linking the Sumida River to the sexual quarters of Yoshiwara exist. Yet, like a tantalizing jigsaw with many main pieces missing, this sums up seeking to delve into his world. Therefore, one can only presume that he suffered ill health and possibly passed away – or that he decided on a different career path and left the art world behind. 

Irrespective of this, Shunzan produced many delightful pieces of art.


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