The journal Ryusei kept while living in Kugenuma includes the following entry from January 28, 1920: "I started painting a seated three-quarter-length portrait but quit. I changed to a horizontal orientation and am painting her seated, holding a doll, with a beautiful hexagonal box beside her. . . It seems to be going well. With this composition, the effect is profound and I feel this will be a quite good work. At any rate, I sense I am going a step deeper." The introduction to his solo exhibition of watercolors and sketches in March and April of that year, in which he first showed this watercolor, describes what makes the sketches and watercolors so compelling: "Comprehending beauty to the full and then leaping straight into expression is the secret of both sketching and watercolors." On the verso of this work is a sketch for what seems to be the seated figure that he had abandoned.


  • Title: Seated Portrait of Reiko with a Doll
  • Creator: KISHIDA Ryusei
  • Creator Lifespan: 1891/1929
  • Creator Nationality: Japanese
  • Creator Gender: Male
  • Date Created: 1920
  • Technique: Watercolor
  • Physical Dimensions: w475 x h345 cm
  • Object Title: 麗子坐像
  • Artist Name: 岸田劉生
  • Medium: paper

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