Feb 20, 2009
As far as the writing, a good friend of mine knows a Professor of Japanese & Asian Studies at Furman University and passed photos on to him to evaluate the writing. He was able to conclude that it is indeed Chinese.
Top right: The second character in the four does not make sense in Japanese, but other three do: Water-X-Four-Seasons. It seems it is part of a series of 4 seasons of water. It is Summer and Rain (the two characters below the first four).
Bottom right: The real bottom one is the name of the painter: The first character is his/her Family name and it probably means tree, but abbreviated in post-revolutionary Chinese way, which is different from Japanese. Second and third are his/her given name. The second in Japanese means "wish fulfilled ." The third is again a post-revolutionary abbreviation and I do not know the meaning. The fourth means "Painted/Picture" indicating the person with the name of the three characters painted/drew this. The vertical 4 small characters and the horizontal 3 characters are not the same as the painter's name and written in more ancient, stylized characters and are difficult to decipher.
Bottom left: They seem to be the stamps of either artist or publisher, but I cannot decipher. The top two characters in the red stamps are (from the right) "to stretch" and "to obey" and the bottom left is similar to "silver."
Just one of those weird things that come across our lives for a few moments...
at 7:11 PM