Kyosai (Kawanabe Kyosai), 1831–89, Japanese painter and caricaturist. He studied with Kano Tohaku and was influenced by Hokusai. He is considered Japan's first political caricaturist, and the political commentary of his caricatures during the Meiji Restoration, including his portrayal of Western influence and those in high places, sometimes led to his arrest and imprisonment. His paintings often crowded people, demons, and animals into colorful scenes of frenzied movement, and he was fond of scatological humor. Some of his most famous works include the huge scroll He-gassen, or The Battle of the Farts (1868); the woodblock print School for Spooks (1872), from the Drawings for Pleasure series; and One Hundred Demons (1890). In 1874 he cofounded what is considered to be the first manga magazine. The Kawanabe Kyosai Memorial Museum, Warabi, Saitama prefecture, Japan, is devoted to his and his daughter's work.

See studies by E. Guimet (1876), J. Condor (1911), I. Kyoshin (1984), and T. Clark (1993).

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