Kawanabe Kyōsai

Born in Koga, Japan, Kawanabe Kyōsai (1831–1889) quickly abandoned his classical art education in favor of a newer, less rigid style. Witness to the political and societal upheavals of 1867, he attained a reputation as a caricaturist. His cartoons – highly critical of authority in general – brought him arrests and detainment from both the shogunate and, later, the newly restored Emperor. In 1874, he created Eshinbun Nipponchi – widely considered to be the first manga.