[SOSAKU HANGA] ONCHI, Kôshirô, artist & author. UMI NO DOWA. Tokyo: Hanga-sô, Shôwa 9 [1934]. Self-wrappers in glassine, with Onchi's text and accompanying 6 polychrome woodblock prints, the blocks of which were carved by him. Each print is a vortex of images with the female form as visual pivot. Onchi and his work need no introduction - he is considered the most important Japanese printmaker of the mid-Century and one of the most innovative and creative of all time. As a leader of the Sosaku Hanga Creative Print movement, he guided the development of many of the dominant figures of post-war art until his premature death in the 1950's.

UMI NO DOWA is a seminal work. This copy has scarcely any of the usual foxing. It is near fine, with the original price band, the latter being very unusual. It is also inscribed by Onchi, the only inscribed copy we have ever seen. Plus, a collector at some point has laid in an advance printed advertisement with reviews for UMI NO DÔWA, done at the time of publication. Certainly a most desirable copy of this highspot at the intersection of the Creative Print Movement and the Avant Garde before the War.