Keishu, Takeuchi

Takeuchi Keishu (1861-1943) was a highly regarded Japanese artist and printmaker who made significant contributions to the ukiyo-e tradition during the Meiji period. Born in Kanazawa, Ishikawa Prefecture, Keishu initially trained in the field of traditional Japanese painting before turning his focus to ukiyo-e prints (Marks, 2012). He became a student of Yoshitoshi Tsukioka, one of the most influential ukiyo-e artists of the time (Kobayashi, 2014).

Under Yoshitoshi’s guidance, Keishu developed a distinct artistic style that incorporated elements of both traditional and modern techniques. His prints often depicted historical and mythical subjects, displaying a remarkable ability to create dynamic compositions with intricate details (Kodansha Encyclopedia of Japan, 2021). Keishu’s works were characterized by refined lines, meticulous craftsmanship, and vibrant colors.

Keishu’s talent and dedication to his craft were widely recognized, earning him numerous awards and honors throughout his career. He participated in major exhibitions and art societies, solidifying his reputation as a skilled artist. In addition to printmaking, Keishu excelled in other art forms such as painting and calligraphy, showcasing his versatility and mastery of various mediums (Kobayashi, 2014).

Throughout his life, Keishu played a significant role in preserving and revitalizing the ukiyo-e tradition. He actively participated in the ukiyo-e revival movement, which sought to breathe new life into the declining art form. Keishu’s dedication to preserving the beauty and craftsmanship of traditional Japanese art while incorporating his own artistic vision made him a notable figure during the Meiji period (Marks, 2012).

Keishu’s influence extended beyond his own artistic achievements. As a respected artist and teacher, he had a significant impact on his students, many of whom went on to become prominent artists in their own right. Notable among his students was the artist Takehisa Yumeji, who became famous for his romantic and lyrical art style (Kodansha Encyclopedia of Japan, 2021). Keishu’s guidance and mentorship helped shape the artistic landscape of his time and left a lasting legacy.


  • Kobayashi, T. (2014). Takeuchi Keishu: Nihon no Nishiki-e [Takeuchi Keishu: Japanese Woodblock Prints]. Tokyo: Gakken.
  • Kodansha Encyclopedia of Japan. (2021). Takeuchi Keishu.
  • Marks, A. (2012). Japanese Woodblock Prints: Artists, Publishers and Masterworks: 1680-1900. Tokyo: Tuttle Publishing.