Lot 2: JUNZO ITO (DATES UNKNOWN). SOUTH MANCHURIA RAILWAY CO. Circa 1930. 38x29 inches, 96x74 cm.
November 8, 2012
New York, NY, USALive Auction
JUNZO ITO (DATES UNKNOWN) SOUTH MANCHURIA RAILWAY CO. Circa 1930.
38x29 1/4 inches, 96 1/2x74 1/4 cm.
Condition B+: restored losses at edges, some affecting image; repaired tears and restoration in margins and image.
What at first glance appears to be a traditional railway poster is actually a sophisticated allegorical representation filled with imagery connected with the South Manchuria Railway Company. Amongst the prominent symbolism is the woman's clothing, a regional robe from Jiandao, an area on the border between China and Korea which had been annexed by Japan in 1910; her elaborate hair is actually a fan of decorative railway ties; she is holding a lamb, which is representative of the wool production in Manchuria, and the flowers behind her are ginseng, an indigenous Manchurian flower and a great source of revenue.