Have you had enough Mokuhankan news? Not me ... there is plenty more in store! And I mean that literally!
Although my personal printmaking projects have moved steadily forward for many years, the Mokuhankan venture that I began a few years ago has been able to progress only very slowly. This is because the resources available for it - time and money - have both been in very short supply! Even now, with new Senshafuda prints being added to the catalogue every few months (not to mention the new kakegami), growth is still very slow indeed.
A couple of months back, I had an idea. What if I were to approach other print suppliers - people whose work I knew and trusted - and suggest that we work together to bring their prints to the market? They would gain by having the international exposure I could provide, and I would gain by having Mokuhankan become a much more interesting and varied place to shop.
So I decided to explore this idea, and am pleased to report that Mokuhankan now has three 'partners'!
1) Prints from the oeuvre of the late Toshi Yoshida, newly produced by my friend Shinkichi Numabe, one of the most respected printers working in the field today. He works under the direction of Toshi-san's son Tsukasa to create these prints, of course using the original blocks. The image of two cranes on this page is just one example, and there are going to be more than 50 beautiful Yoshida prints available.
2) Prints from the inventory of the Takumi Hanga Workshop (the place where young Senshafuda carver Sato-san is currently training, under Mr. Motoharu Asaka). They have a very interesting mix of items, some newly produced, and some supplied from the remaining inventory of the now defunct Takamizawa Company, one of the finest of the old print publishers. For the most part, these are classical ukiyo-e reproductions, but they will be providing me with more modern work too.
3) Rare books and prints supplied by my friend Shingo Ueda, who is a licensed dealer in kobijutsu (arts/antiques). He attends the private dealer auctions in the old book district of Tokyo every week, and frequently comes home with all manner of interesting treasures. He is going to share with me some items he feels would be of interest to Mokuhankan customers.
Now this is a huge expansion of my little venture, and it is going to take quite a bit of time to get this up and running smoothly. These prints will be appearing in the online catalogue bit by bit as I find time to do the necessary behind-the-scenes work.
Please make a habit of visiting the Mokuhankan website now and again to see what new items are being featured. You'll see these three new categories listed in the menus, and I hope you will find something there worth collecting!