Before Singing, Madame Talia Savanieva by Chiura Obata (Japan, 1885–1975). Woodblock print, embellished with metallic pigments and gofun. A delightful and highly detailed portrait of Madame Talia Savanieva. Madame Talia Savanieva was a famous opera singer based in San Francisco in the 1920s. Obata become friends with the singer while painting sets for Madame Butterfly in 1924.
This is print 31 of 35 from the World Landscape series and is the only portrait in the series. It is reported that the print required 110 separate printing sequences. The World Landscape series was a groundbreaking effort which cost Obata all of his life savings to create. He was determined to ensure that the quality of the prints were up to the highest possible standards. The project employed more than 32 carvers and 40 printers over 18 months.
Signed in roman script by the artist Chiura Obata, and sealed, published by Takamizawa in 1930. Originally from The Sokolov Collection.
Size: 17 7/10" h x 13" w (Vertical dai oban: 45 x 33 cm)
Condition: Very good impression and color, very minor toning, minor wear to edges and corners, two small tears to top edge.