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Hanabusa Itchô (1652-1724) and Takao Hôko (dates unknown)
Miyakodori - Capital bird, a gull on a pole
Signed: Hokusôô Itchô sho
Seals: Shuzai san'un senseki kan
Technique: sumi and colours on paper 96.8 x 25.3
Mounting: blue brown brocade and brown silk
179.5 x 34.7
Condition: aged, soiled, slightly creased, otherwise good

Mountain passes reach to the sky, where only birds can find their way;
On the river and the lake just an old fisherman.

Verse seven from the ”Eight verses about the arrival of autumn, written by the Chinese poet Du Fu (712-770) when he stayed at Kunming Lake.

Itchô was born in Kyoto. When he moved to Edo with his father at an early age, it is said that he took lessons with Kanô Yasunobu (1613-1685), Kanô Tan'yû’s younger brother. Rapidly gaining skill and reputation he became a member of the Kanô family. Living as a bohemian, he was an eminent eyewitness of contemporary life. In 1698 he was expelled to Miyake island for 12 years for compromising and slandering the Shogun family. Most of his surviving works are from the time after his release until his death in 1724.
He founded his own school late in his career. "If one person were chosen to exemplify in his career the conflicting artistic and social pressures of the Genroku era (1688-1704), Hanabusa Itchô would be a likely candidate." (Rosenfield) "One of the most original painters to come out of the Kanô school. A delightful painter of deserved fame" (Roberts)

Nihon no bijutsu vol. 260
Nihon bijutsu kaiga vol. 16
Itabashi Ward Museum, 1984
Roberts p. 58
Araki pp. 26-46
Rosenfield B.12