Miller, Lilian (1895 - 1943), "Father Kim of Korea (B)"
|Title||Father Kim of Korea (B)|
|Medium||Original Japanese Woodblock Print|
|Publisher||The Artist - Privately Published|
|Reference No||Brown: Fig. 37, Cat. 55|
|Size||8 -1/4 x 10 "|
|Condition||Mint, with superb colors.|
Notes: Signed and dated by artist in black ink. Artist monogram; lower left, with artist chops in lower margin. The overall composition and placement of the figure against an abstract background shaded from yellow to orange constitute on of Miller's most-accomplished early designs. The same figure is also shown in the greeting-card print, "Korean Man Smoking Pipe" (Fig. 10c). In later states, the artist deployed a light blue background, changed his undershirt color from blue to yellow and the tassel on his tobacco pouch to red from blue.
Lilian Miller wrote, "The world would call me poor...but there I smile. Could any treasure be more real than simple tastes and a kindly heart? I spare the world inconvenience in the one and give it all of the other.
A happy American girl has painted me...no one else could. She has caught my smile and portrayed my spirit. Do you surmise that she is hurrying me to work? Ah, dear reader, little must you know of the ways of my country - it has ever been called the "Land of Morning Calm", more tobacco is my mission!"
Miller explained: "In 1917 I saw Korea for the first time. It seemed to me a story-book land. The people are like old Chinese sages with their long flowing garments of white, always white, and the men with their odd little black hats. These cards and prints were aimed at the market of Western diplomats and businessmen - and their wives, most critically - living in large East Asian cities. Miller perhaps made, and sold, as many as two or three-hundred copies of each work (The Great Kanto Earthquake and fire of 1923 destroyed the bulk of this production)." - Brown, pg. 45-46.