Artist: Teisai Hokuba (蹄斎北馬)

Alternate names:
Arisaka (family name - 有坂)
Gorohachi (nickname - 五郎八)
Hoshino (original family name - 星野)
Shūen (go - 秋園)
Shunshunsai (go - 駿々斎)
Shunshuntei (go - 駿々亭)

Lifetime: 1771 - 1844

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While Hokuba was no stranger to creating images of warriors fighting each other or struggling against mythical creatures most of these appeared almost exclusively in his book illustrations, many of which are buried away in the archives of Japanese collections.

Little is written or known about Hokuba (北馬: 1771-1844) - like so many other ukiyo-e artists. According to Roberts he was a painter, printmaker and illustrator. He was born in Edo and lived there throughout his life. "One of the outstanding pupils of Hokusai." Roberts later added that Hokuba was a prolific artist who designed many surimono, book illustrations, but was known best for his paintings of beautiful women. He "Worked first in the Kanō style, then influenced by Hokusai, but still retained something of the Kanō qualities; a delicate, quite charming manner."

Richard Lane in his book Hokusai: Life and Work says on p. 111 that "Attracted by his eccentric, innovative style, Hokusai's new pupils came from all walks of life: of the more notable ones Hokuba, for example, was a retired government official [i.e., a samurai], and Hokkei had been a fishmonger."

Matthi Forrer in his book on Hokusai notes that "Hokuba was reputed to draw as excellently with his left hand as with his right."