Size: high 20cm, wide 17.5cm
Object Literature: Surimono are a a genre of Japanese woodblock prints and unlike the more famous ukiyo-e, which were produced with the intention of being distributed as widely as possible, surimono were not commercially produced but used for gifts or special events and were almost never sold to the general public. They were most popular from the 1790s to the 1830s, and many leading artists produced them, the best papers and pigments were used and top rank craftsmen were commissioned to do the carving and printing. Usually they contain a poem.
Object History: Ex Lyon & Turnbull, previously from the collection of Arthur Halcrow Verstage. Arthur Halcrow Verstage (1875-1969) was an architect who spent much of his career in the public sector. He was a student at the Royal Academy School of Architecture in the 1900s and was elected as an Associate of the Royal Institute of British Architects in 1902. By 1903 he was a student and assistant at the Central School of Arts and Crafts (later known as the Central School of Art and Design) in London where William Lethaby was principal and a great influence on him. He then oversaw the design of the new school in Southampton Row from 1905-8. From here he became an architect for London County Council and was involved with many London societies, and as a founding member of the Kelmscott Fellowship, a forerunner to The William Morris Society. His large and varied collection was a reflection of his wide interest in the arts. His archive was purchased by The William Morris Society in 2005.