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KAWAKAMI SUMIO. - [Egeresu Iroha Jinbutsu].

Tokyo, Hangaso 1935 (Showa 10). Small quarto by size (26x18cm) publisher's cloth backed illustrated boards, illustrated slipcase; title and 26 woodcuts with facing text on double folded grey card leaves. Cover and box a bit browned, a nice copy. ¶ Kawakami's work is charming, simple to the point of naive so of course it isn't. Kawakami nursed a nostalgia for a time he did not experience. I'm sure there's word for that which isn't nationalism, xenophobia or popularism. In his case it was the Meiji enlightenment and the confusion of westernisation that fascinated him and it is easy to see the models of early Meiji primers for children in his prints. But there is also sly fun. In this alphabet V is for Virgin but U is for Uncle who you can bet will make sure V is disqualified. J is for Jack, maybe Jack is a sailor, maybe what either or both will have by the time they are done with each other. I'm pretty sure I for Instructor is a self portrait - Kawakami was an English teacher for quite some time.
AUD 500.00 [Appr.: EURO 320.75 US$ 371.91 | £UK 280.25 | JP¥ 41175] Book number 10460

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