Woodblock Prints of Sparring Techniques Fascinating trio of woodblock prints
Amazing and very rare group of 3 colour woodblock prints showing men wrestling and sparring in a ring. One shows a Japanese wrestler and an American man, another shows an Indian man and an American man along with a Western referee, and the last shows a Japanese wrestler and an American man in a suit. The print of the Japanese man punching and breaking the large barrel states that the man is Shokichi Hamada, who was the first Japanese wrestler. Hamada apparently was a sumo wrestler but went to the US in 1883 and stayed for 4 years and learned other wrestling styles. He brought twenty US wrestlers to Japan and it would seem that these prints depict some of those bouts.
Artist unknown. c1887. Each sheet 37.5 x 25.6cm.
In very good condition with minor wear. One print has a very thin backing paper, the other two are unbacked and show nice bleedthrough.