錦木に群鷽鳥 (初冬)

nishikigi ni ore usodori (shotou)

Winged Spindletree and Flock of Bullfinches (Early Winter)

ニシキギに群ウソ (初冬)


Original Number

64


ADDITIONAL NOTES FOR THIS DESIGN
Currently Documented Edition Signature and Seal Markings:
Edition I: 楽山居 Raku-zan Kyo + Seal A

[For illustration of seals listed by seal code letter, see the Seals article. For edition characteristics applicable to this series as a whole, see the Edition article.]

Design History:
This woodblock print was produced from an original painting on silk dating from the late 1920s whose current location is unknown. The indentification of this design as number 64 is original to Rakusan who published the print as the 64th design in his series of one hundred woodblock prints called 楽山花鳥畫譜, Rakuzan Kachou Gafu, lit. 'Rakusan's Flower and Bird Print Series'. Initial edition I publication of 64 was in December 1931 (or perhaps slightly later) in installment thirty-two (of fifty). However, additional edition I printings of 64 may have continued until as late as 1933. The copy illustrated here is typical of edition I. No later edition printings of 64 are currently known.

Copies in Public Collections:
Edition I: Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, MA, USA; (1951) 51.1747 [not illustrated online].

Species Illustrated:
Winged Spindletree (Burning Bush, Winged Euonymus), Euonymus alatus, 錦木, にしきぎ, ニシキギ, nishiki-gi, lit. 'colored tree', is a Japanese native often planted in Japan and other countries as an ornamental shrub or small tree. Here 錦 nishiki-gi refers to the brilliant red color of the autumn foliage which can be seen lingering on the tree in Rakusan's design. (However, in bird names it often has its other meaning, 'brocade'.)

(Eurasian) Bullfinch, Pyrrhula pyrrhula, is today usually 鷽, うそ, ウソ, uso, 'bullfinch'. However, this familiar winter visitor has many Japanese names. Rakusan used a variant on the modern name, 鷽鳥, うそどり, ウソドリ, uso-dori, 'bullfinch-bird'. Here Rakusan uses 群, ore, 'flock (a general collective)'.


Related Designs: