Selling a Japanese Woodblock Print
January 2, 2013 9:06 AM   Subscribe

I have a mid-20th century woodblock print by Japanese-American artist Ansei Uchima that I would like to sell. How should I go about selling it?

The print may be the same block as this one in the Metropolitan Museum of Art's collections, though mine says 7/30 instead of n/50. I have a documented family-friend connection with Oliver Statler, who was a novelist and an authority on mid-20th century Japanese woodblock prints; he wrote the book "Modern Japanese Prints: An Art Reborn" (Tuttle, 1956). (He was also friends with James Michener). Ansei Uchima was closely associated with Statler as his translator, and this print came directly into my family from Statler (I can document this, too.)

I live in the American Midwest, and I would guess that a dealer in Chicago familiar with Japanese 20th century art would be my best bet, but I don't really know where to start. Do I get on the phone and start making inquiries? How do I know who's good? My order-of-magnitude estimate is that the print is worth between $200 and $2000 US; I have no idea if the provenance is relevant or not.
posted by endless_forms to Media & Arts (2 answers total)
It looks like Uchima is represented by the Susan Teller Gallery in NYC (, and the Annex Galleries in Santa Rosa, CA. You might start with some phone calls/emails in their direction. You can also contact the American Society of Appraisers ( and see if there's anyone in the Chicago area who could help you get an idea of what the piece is worth (although this will likely cost something.)
posted by PussKillian at 9:53 AM on January 2, 2013

Floating World Gallery in Chicago.
posted by Jason and Laszlo at 10:42 AM on January 2, 2013

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