|Article number:||Tokyo National Museum: Small White Butterfly A6|
*includes hobonichi techo 2023 A6 english planner book
This collaboration with the Tokyo National Museum comes on the 150th year of the founding of the museum.
Nicknamed Tohaku, the Tokyo National Museum collects, preserves, researches, exhibits, and educates the public about cultural artifacts from across Asia, with a focus on Japan. Currently there are about 120,000 objects in its collection, including the print chosen for this Hobonichi Techo cover, originally by Shibata Zeshin.
Shibata Zeshin (1807-1891) was born in Ryogoku, Edo, and was an active lacquer artist and painter from the late Edo period until the middle of the Meiji era. He had many lacquering techniques that he created himself, and created many magnificent lacquer wares and paintings. Zeshin had trained in art since he was young in order to draft sketches for lacquer work, so he also demonstrated talent in painting sketches, portraits, and designs.
One of these is Tairyukyo Gafu, a collection of 72 pictures depicting plants, animals, people, and landscapes. Tairyukyo is one of the names Zeshin went by, which originated from the fact that he could see a willow tree on the opposite side of the bank of the Kanda River where he lived at one time.
The print on this cover features one of the most beautiful selections from the Tairyukyo Gafu. It’s called “Small White Butterfly” and it has an exceptionally beautiful background color and a skillful composition.
The artwork has a gradient where a warm yellow color, reminiscent of spring sunshine, blends into a green with the gentle hue of freshly sprouted young grass. Above that dances a small white butterfly. The “butterfly stopper” pen holders are made with white synthetic leather and bring the whole cover together.
The cover interior is a pale blue reminiscent of a clear sky. The interior pocket on the right-hand side has the same gradient as the front cover. The left-hand pocket has the Tokyo National Museum logo to mark our collaboration together.
The bookmarks are a calm shade of brown. The charms are diamond-shaped after the image of a butterfly’s wings or flower petals.
This artwork combines the warmth of hand-drawn brush art with a beautifully designed composition that feels fresh even to this day. We hope you thoroughly enjoy Shibata Zeshin’s creation.