Sino-Japanese War 1894-95: Manchurian Campaign Part 3, December 1894 - March 1895
 
 
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The battle of Niuzhuang in early March 1895 involved fierce house-to-house fighting. Without drama or heroic gestures, Gekkō creates an exquisite winter landscape. One scarcely notices the horrific events taking place in the house. At the far left side of the composition, shrouded by the snowstorm, the house is the last thing one looks at. The Japanese soldiers kneeling on the snowy ground are full of tension as they shoot blindly through the storm. In this powerful image of war, the soldier in red rises as he turns towards the house and leads the viewer to the carnage within.           
Dramatic depiction of fighting in the streets at Niuzhuang during the Sino-Japanese War. Meiji Imperial troops take refuge behind a clump of trees as they fire upon the enemy, clouds of smoke billowing across the scene. At left, a Japanese soldier bursts through the doorway of a building, waving his sword above his head as two Chinese men cower in the corner with hands clasped in prayer.

A striking composition with beautiful soft shading and excellent detail in the carefully rendered soldiers and hand-applied white pigment providing a dusting of snow. A fantastic design and a great choice for a student of military history.

Collections: Jean S. and Frederic A. Sharf Collection, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, Massachusetts.

References: Illustrated in the 1991 Worcester Art Museum publication “In Battles Light”, Catalogue number 5, p.31.
Illustrated in the 2014 paper, Ogata Gekko: War Triptychs. p.10. Triptych 26,

 
     
 
 
 
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